Having your social media account hacked is probably one of the scariest and most unpleasant experiences in the modern day world. Unfortunately, data leaks are becoming increasingly frequent as the hackers progress and learn how to bypass the system. Over the last month major breaches in LinkedIn, Myspace and Tumblr accounts have surfaced, reportedly involving over 642 million stolen login credentials. However, it seems that this is only a beginning. Recently, another major networking website Twitter was targeted as well. Leaked Source announced that around 32,888,300 entries featuring Twitter users’ email address, username and password appeared on the dark web under a hacker named Tessa88. All the accounts are put on sale for 10 BitCoins, which equals $5773 USD. The specialists speculate that the same group of criminals involved in the LinkedIn, Myspace and Tumblr attacks might be behind this breach as well. Twitter representatives deny the hacking possibility and suggest that some computer virus might be responsible for collecting and leaking the data.
You may be wondering why cyber criminals are hacking accounts of common people instead of some celebrities or politicians. There is no denying that the accounts of the famous individuals are constantly being targeted as well; however, regular users’ credentials may be just as useful. Hacked accounts may be used to share information or follow other users or companies forcibly, as well as to extract some sensitive information. Strangely enough, though, the majority of hacking attempts are carried out simply for fun. What is especially concerning is that the cyber criminals are good at working in disguise, so you may not be aware that your account has been hacked in the first place. Therefore, it is recommended to check whether your username or email address has not been corrupted on websites like haveibeenpwned.com.
If you find that any of your social media accounts have been hacked, you should change your password immediately. It might be that a weak password is the reason why your account was hacked, so you have to think of stronger one to prevent similar breaches in the future. Make sure that your new password is longer than 8 characters, does not contain your nickname, personal name or full words, features digits, and other symbols, and differs from passwords on other accounts. If you value your privacy, you should regularly change passwords on all of your social media accounts because it is one of the most important steps of keeping hackers at bay.