Don’t Give Hackers the Combination to Your Digital Safe!

Are you a business owner? If so, some of your most treasured and valuable possessions are kept within the solid, steel-like confines of your website and its server. Just as you should lock and protect your tangible safe with all its valuable possessions, so should you do with your digital safe.


“I’m not worried,” you say, “I have an SSL certificate.” Well, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but an SSL certificate doesn’t lock and protect your website. It just locks and protects credit card transactions. And just to keep the “digital safe” analogy going, once you have given hackers access to your website by not scanning it for security vulnerabilities, they will open it. Once open, they can edit the combination to your digital safe, sending all your customers’ credit card information securely and safely (locked and protected through the SSL) to their bank instead of yours.

Legitimate business owners keep their websites protected and safe from hackers by having Trust Guard run daily security scans to check for vulnerabilities. Don’t think your site has issues and that it never will? Think again. 86% of the time, when Trust Guard scans a website for the first time, it fails. 86%. That’s more than 4 out of every 5 websites. Now how confident do you feel? Visit Trust Guard today! Contact He’ll give your website a free initial scan to let you know if you’ve already given hackers the combination to your digital safe.

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Tips to Improve Your Email Security

You should definitely do what you can to secure your e-mail from casual snooping:


1. Use an account from a major provider like Google, Microsoft, or Yahoo. Do they get hacked? Yes. Are they safer than most? Yes.

2. Use a strong password and two-factor authentication enabled. If your phone uses a fingerprint reader, take advantage of that added convenience by locking your phone with a strong alphanumeric password. Target a 12- to 14-character minimum, since shorter passwords are more susceptible to brute force attacks – the longer and more random the better. Two-step authentication (or 2FA) means using a combination of multiple credentials to get into your account, usually a password and a six-digit code sent to your phone or generated by an authenticator app.
3. For truly sensitive communications that you want to keep private, use Signal or WhatsApp or even Facebook Messenger’s “Secret Conversations” feature.

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Hackers Drive Away in Tesla Cars by Accessing Mobile App

According to SCMagazineUK, Norwegian app security firm Promon has demonstrated through research that cyber-criminals could take control of Tesla vehicles, to the point where they can locate, unlock and drive the car away unhindered. Such a hack, possible by exploiting a lack of security in their smartphone app, gives criminals total control of the vehicle, providing additional functionality to that exposed by Keen Security Labs in a different hack in late September.


This is all done by attacking and taking control of the Tesla app. This underlines the vital importance of app security, and the wider implications this could have for IoT-connected devices in general. (IoT refers to the ever-growing network of physical objects that feature an IP address for internet connectivity, and the communication that occurs between these objects and other internet-enabled devices and systems.) Most people understand the importance of online website security – and only visiting sites that constantly check for vulnerabilities, but few consider the potential issues with mobile security.

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Consumers Are Tired of Online Security Warnings

According to a study by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), online security threats are  still an issue.

Security fatigue, or simply being tired of online security warnings has made some people feel indifferent towards potential risks.

security-threatThe paper found that people feel “overwhelmed” with having to be on constant alert from cyber attacks. They are also negatively affected by the proliferation of online security measures available to protect themselves. As a result, many ignore the warning signs of a possible attack. As one individual remarked: “I get tired of remembering my username and passwords.”

Mary Theofanos, co-author of the study and computer scientist at NIST, said:
“Years ago, you had one password to keep up with at work. Now people are being asked to remember 25 or 30. We haven’t really thought about cyber security expanding and what it has done to people.” However, sites like LastPass can help us keep track of our passwords.

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After Getting Hacked, Yahoo! Offers Online Security Strategies

So far as they know, the hack did not include unprotected passwords, payment card data, or bank account information. According to Bob Lord, CISO of Yahoo!, the company is taking the following actions to protect the online security of  their past and current users:yahoo-mobile-verification

  • We are notifying potentially affected users. The content of the email Yahoo! is sending to those users will be available at beginning at 11:30 am (PDT).
  • We are asking potentially affected users to promptly change their passwords and adopt alternate means of account verification. (No matter what online account you have, e-commerce or not, you should change the password at least every six months).
  • We invalidated unencrypted security questions and answers so they cannot be used to access an account.
  • We are recommending that all users who haven’t changed their passwords since 2014 do so.
  • We continue to enhance our systems that detect and prevent unauthorized access to user accounts.
  • We are working closely with law enforcement on this matter.

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Yahoo Hack Begs for Improved Passwords and Security

Yahoo acknowledged that hackers stole the account information of at least 500 million users. Information intercepted by the Yahoo hack included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, birth dates, passwords, and security questions.


If you had/have a Yahoo account, you should assume that your PII (Personally Identifiable Information) was stolen. Changing Yahoo passwords will be just the start for many of you. Comb through other services — especially those for which you provided a Yahoo email address to create an account — to make sure passwords used on those sites aren’t too similar to what you were using on Yahoo. Change passwords for sites that contain sensitive information like financial, health, business, or credit card data.

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Hackers Could Destroy Your Good Reputation

If you’re not careful, hackers will steal your customer’s money, personal information and their loyalty to you and your business.

There have been a great many cyber crimes involving the purposeful destruction of personal and corporate reputations. These include cases of hackers gaining access to websites and social media accounts and changing messages or posting as the individual or company.


Attacks like these can be very damaging if not caught quickly. You can help avoid the destruction of your reputation by:

  • Monitoring all accounts frequently. This way, messages posted by someone who is unauthorized will be caught quickly.
  • Changing passwords often, and asking clients to do the same.
  • Regaining control of accounts as soon as possible when there has been a breach in security.
  • Mitigating damage with consumers by employing goodwill efforts for any issues that the hack may have caused. Then make sure you honestly address the issue immediately.


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Hackers Are Able to Access Millions of Smart Phones!

Computer security firm Check Point and its mobile threat research team revealed details of what it says are a set of “four vulnerabilities affecting 900 million Android smartphones and tablets that use Qualcomm® chipsets.” They call the set of vulnerabilities QuadRooter.

This type of extensive security problem shows how vulnerable our mobile devices are to security threats from hackers. All it takes it to download the wrong app and, often without even realizing it, our personally identifiable information will have been hacked. If you are using one of the above devices, we suggest you go to your phone distributor or carrier to get the patch to fix the security hole as soon as possible.

QuadRooter vulnerabilities are found in software drivers that ship with Qualcomm chipsets. The drivers, which control communication between chipset components, become incorporated into the Android “builds” that manufacturers develop for their devices. Check Point says that since the vulnerable drivers are pre-installed on devices at the point of manufacture, they can only be fixed by installing a patch from the distributor or carrier. Distributors and carriers issuing patches can only do so after receiving fixed driver packs from Qualcomm.

Some of the latest and most popular Android devices found on the market today use these Qualcomm chipsets, including:

DEF CON Has Had Security-Focused Gatherings Every Year Since 1993.


BlackBerry Priv
Blackphone 1 and Blackphone 2
Google Nexus 5X, Nexus 6 and Nexus 6P
HTC One, HTC M9 and HTC 10
LG G4, LG G5, and LG V10
New Moto X by Motorola
OnePlus One, OnePlus 2 and OnePlus 3
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Samsung S7 Edge
Sony Xperia Z Ultra

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Cyber Attacks in 2014 Cost the World $445 Billion


According to the World Economic Forum, 2015, “The Internet of Things is a growing reality, introducing new efficiencies as well as new vulnerabilities and interconnected consequences. Recent technological advances have been beneficial in many respects, but have also opened the door to a growing wave of cyber attacks – including economic espionage and cyber crime that are increasingly perpetrated against businesses. In 2014, The Center for Strategic and International Studies estimated that cyber crime alone cost the global economy US$ 445 billion.”

Businesses in all industries and of all sizes have been affected by the increased complexity, novelty and persistence of cyber attacks, although most small businesses aren’t worried about it enough to protect their sites from hackers with vulnerability scanning. A sharp increase in high-profile cases of larger companies in 2014 has continued into 2015, and shows no sign of slowing down.

Attempts to detect and address attacks are made harder by their constantly evolving nature, as perpetrators quickly find new ways of executing them. Trust Guard, the leader in website security and verification, noted that the number of vulnerabilities for which it scans rose in 2015 to 75,271 up from 66,956 in 2014.

75K Vulnerability Image

In their attempt to provide effective security measures without the assistance of a company with a PCI DSS Approved Scanning Vendor like Trust Guard, businesses trying to match the speed of hackers in their development of prevention and response methods are sometimes constrained by a poor understanding of the risk, a lack of technical talent, and inadequate security capabilities.

According to the World Economic Forum, of all the concerns that global economic leaders have to worry about, eight of them perceive cyber attacks as being the highest risk of causing legal, economic and reputational damage.

Those eight world powerhouses include:

  • Estonia
  • Germany
  • Japan
  • Malaysia
  • Netherlands
  • Singapore
  • Switzerland, and
  • United States of America

Cyber Security 2015 Fears

(The darker the color, the greater the concern over cyber attacks.)

From personal finances to business operations and national infrastructure, public and private services and amenities are increasingly managed via some form of computer network and are consequently vulnerable to attack. The internet is not a fad, it is the way we do commerce and communicate politically, personally, and professionally. One way to help improve the security of online communication and e-commerce throughout the world is for responsible countries and companies to scan their websites and servers on a daily basis for as many vulnerabilities as possible.