By now, you’ve probably heard about the notorious “Google Hack” that apparently, wasn’t. Early last month, it was announced that an anonymous Russian hacker obtained the account credentials for an estimated 272 million online accounts from hosts ranging from Google to Yahoo, and even a Russian internet company that controls the 3 largest Russian social networking sites.
The supposed heist made world-wide headlines because of the scale of the breech – an online hack of this caliber had never been achieved before. After the announcement was made, it was shortly followed by another report stating that the hacker was offering to sell the sizeable cache on an online forum on the dark web for upwards of 50 rubles – or, about 75 cents in U.S. currency. Perplexed by the minimal asking price, everyone began to question the validity of this breech. Rightly so, it seems, as the hack was nothing but a farce to gain publicity for a cyber security business.
So, even though the hack wasn’t real and no information was actually stolen, why is this still an important event to note? While companies like Google and Yahoo are consistently working to ensure that there are no vulnerabilities in their systems, the truth of the matter is that every day hackers are also working to expose susceptibilities that networkers aren’t even aware exist. The security threat posed by hackers is becoming so viable and alarming that huge tech companies like Google will hold annual competitions in which they will pay people large sums of money if they can hack into their network – just so that vulnerabilities can be highlighted!
As we move forward with technological advances, the caliber of online hacking is just going to increase. As we’ve seen, while tech giants are doing their part to ensure security, it is nonetheless essential that you take the necessary measures to protect yourself on the individual level. A few precautionary measures taken today, can ensure the safety of your information online as we move through the inevitable advancement of hacker culture.