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Webcam Spying: How To Protect The Privacy of Your Employees

Various devices that can be usedfor webcam spying
Exponential advancements in technology has brought with it a dark side. Webcam spying and hacking is on the rise, and it’s our own fault.

As the workforce grows more mobile and businesses grow globally, the task of keeping your employees and organization safe from cyber threats can no longer just be to safeguard them only against external threats.

It is increasing becoming apparent that a more insidious threat, referred to as “an insider threat” is more than capable of leaving the critical data of your business vulnerable.

A good example of this is an analyses of the way employees interact with data across the organization, and how their actions can unwittingly defeat the protection of business data while exposing themselves to privacy concerns like webcam spying, especially in organizations without effective workforce and computer security monitoring programs.

Do your employees ever complain of having a funny feeling that they are being watched in the office, or in their hotel rooms when they are on the road? If so, you’re in the same boat as a lot of other Internet users.

As creepy as it sounds, webcam hacking and spying is a real danger, and peeping Toms could be watching your employees’ every move, in the privacy of their hotel rooms. (more…)

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The Challenges of Data Leakage Prevention for Small Businesses

Hard drive with technicians trying to stop data leakage

With the rapid advances in technology and the attendant interconnected nature of computer systems, many business owners are becoming increasingly aware of the dire need to control the flow of information into, through and out of their enterprises, and challenges of trying to prevent data leakage.

For years, the focus of the business owner was on how to stop viruses, spam, network intrusions etc. Now the new threat is massive data leakage. This new threat affects all kinds of businesses large and small. According to a recent International Data Corporation (IDC) report, over 80 percent of respondents to a survey acknowledged that the fear of data loss and leakage was one of the biggest challenges facing their establishments. Of these, over 50 percent admitted that they were already victims of data leakage incidents. (more…)

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Phishing And Spam Emails Are Dangerous For Small Businesses

Cyber criminal using a phishing hook on endpoints

Email is critical to an organization. Phishing provides a way for cyber criminals to use email as a disguise to try to sneak by and steal business data.

There are only so many ways to break into a bank. You can march through the door. You can climb through a window. You can tunnel through the floor.

There is the service entrance, the employee entrance, and access on the roof.

Criminals who want to rob a bank will probably use an open route – such as a side door. It’s easier than breaking down a wall.

Cyber criminals who want to break into your computer network face a similar challenge. They need to enter. They can look for a weakness in your network – maybe a vulnerability in your server – but it’s easier for them to use an open route. Email is one of their favorites.

Email is a door into your computer network. Data passes through it every day. If criminals want to break in, some will throw on a disguise and try to sneak by.

By pretending to be someone else, such as someone you respect, they will try to earn enough of your trust to steal from you.

This is called phishing. (more…)

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Web Browser Extensions Caught Spying On Chrome and Firefox Users

Representation of data transfer due to web browser extension spying.

Not too long ago, we warned users about why some online ads they see seem to be precisely targeted to their tastes and interests, including the spooky tendencies of websites remembering browsing and shopping preferences from visit to visit or device to device. It turns out that Avast and its recently acquired AVG, have been doing a lot of background spying and data pilfering through their “free” web browser plugins.

Data pilfering is widespread and very profitable, and data thieves seem to have no problem getting willing “victims” counting the number of people using “free” products that come with all kinds of terms and conditions. So much so that some even boast of the ability to provide “[I]ncredibly detailed clickstream data from 100 million global online shoppers and 20 million global app users” that advertisers can analyze “…however you want: track what users searched for, how they interacted with a particular brand or product, and what they bought. Look into any category, country, or domain.”

All from a user looking for a solution to protect them from online threats and installing a web browser extension that is supposed to protect them from such invasion of privacy.

As reported by the creator of Adblock Plus, Wladimir Palant, Avast has been spying on the users of their antivirus products, and appears to have been doing so for years, through their Avast Online Security web browser extension which is promoted as having the ability to provide “maximum protection” from spyware and other online dangers.

The sad fact is that sometimes, users are not even aware that they have the extension because the Avast Secure Browser has Avast Online Security installed by default and is hidden from the extension listing and cannot be uninstalled by regular means. (more…)

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How To Protect Online Data Privacy Using Enhanced Tools

Mobile device showing the various tools of data privacy attacks

In the first place, and speaking of data privacy, have you ever wondered why some online ads you see are targeted to your tastes and interests? Or how websites remember your preferences from visit-to-visit or device-to-device?

The answer may be in the “web tracking cookies” installed on your computer when you visit a website, and other online tracking methods like:

  • Device fingerprinting where information is collected about your device for the purpose of identification,
  • Cross-device tracking technology which enables the tracking of users across multiple devices such as smartphones, television sets, smart TVs, and personal computer, and
  • Cross-site tracking where companies collect data on where you’ve been and what you’ve done across multiple websites.

What is a web tracker?

A web tracker is a small computer program (called script) placed by a website on your computer and is designed to collect information about your preferences and who you are as you interact with the site. Sometimes this script is placed purposefully by the website you’re on, other times a script may be from a website you’ve never visited. (more…)

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5 Critical Facts You Must Know Before Hosting Your Business In The Cloud

An illustration of several technology services and laptops in a cloud hosting simulation.

Cloud hosting seems to be the rage these days, and for very good reasons.

When you decide to look into transitioning the computer network and operations of your business or organization to  cloud hosting, you will probably be faced with conflicting advice, confusion and no real answers to your questions and concerns over security, cost and whether or not it’s appropriate for your organization.

Besides that, the simple fact is, cloud hosting is NOT a good fit for every company, and consequently, if you don’t get all the facts or fully understand the pros and cons, you can end up making some VERY poor and expensive decisions that you’ll deeply regret later. (more…)

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