“A Travelers Guide To Protecting Your Data”

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“A Travelers Guide To Protecting Your Data”

Dear Blast Readers,

 

When you hear the word “summer”, what is the first thing you think of? Vacation? Travel? Did you know that most people wont leave home without their smartphones, tablets, and/or computers? Have you ever wondered how traveling can compromise your digital security?

 

People tend to think of vacations as a time to get away and un-plug from the world, both the digital world and physical world. But, it is not realistic to believe that you will NEVER go online while traveling. Yes, it is fun to post pictures and status updates on your social media accounts in real time. But, did you know that by doing so, there is a possibility you are opening yourself, and your digital devices, to cyber criminals?

 

When traveling, public Wi-Fi might seem like a great thing. It allows you to check your email, work, and post updates to your social media accounts. But, as convent as it is, connecting to public Wi-Fi can also be dangerous. Cyber Criminals can take over public networks, and logging onto a corrupted network allows cyber criminals access to your:

  • Personal details
  • Credit card numbers
  • Passwords

 

The data that you, as a traveler, bring wherever you go is valuable and desired. It is important that while traveling you do everything in your power to keep your digital information safely out of the reach of cyber criminals.

 

How? Here are a few tips.

  • Only Use Secure Wi-Fi Networks. When connecting to a public network, consider using a Virtual Private Network, or VPN. This will ensure that your confidential information stays private. A VPN will also ensure that your data goes directly from your device to the network that you are connecting to.
  • Update Your Devices. Updating the software on your devices, as well as the applications updates, is important. Even though the constant update reminder can be annoying, it is your devices way of protecting you and your data.
  • Do Not Use Public Computers. Never use public computers when logging into to banking, email and social media accounts. This means computers in hotel business centers, as well as in-room iPads. Crooks can install keylogging software to track your keystrokes.
  • Secure Your Mobile Devices. Set a PIN for your devices. Setting a PIN can protect your device from unauthorized users.
  • Use Cash Whenever Possible. Using cash whenever possible while traveling keeps your credit/debit card safe from fraudsters. But, if you are to use your credit/debit cards, be cautious.
  • Backup all your devices. Before going on your trip, whether it is for business or vacation, it is a good idea to back up your mobile devices. This allows you to be able to retrieve your information if lost, in case of emergency, or stolen.
  • Critical information should be stored in a different location. When traveling, it is a good idea to store any critical and private information temporarily in a different location. Examples of different locations are: Flash Drives, Mobile Devices, or Cloud Storage.
  • Make sure your computer’s firewall is enabled. Enabling your computer’s firewall helps stop hackers from getting into your system, as well as keeping viruses from spreading and safeguards outgoing computer traffic.

 

If you have any questions about Digital Security, Hacking, Cyber Security, Computer Forensics, or Mobile Forensics contact FDS Global. You can reach us at our office at (954) 727-1957 or by email at RMoody@FDS.Global. Please feel free to visit our website at www.FDS.Global.


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“Is Your Phone Watching You While You Sleep?”

Dear Blast Readers,

 

Have you ever had the hair on the back of your neck stand up because you thought you were being watched? Have you ever wondered if you were being spied on? Imagine your every move being watched and listened to without your knowledge. Have you ever considered that maybe, your smartphone is watching and listening to everything that you say and/or do?

Usually, when someone thinks about a “Smartphone” you think about all the different things that you can do on the phone. The different applications that you can run. Applications like:

·        Gaming Apps

·        Messaging Apps

·        Shopping Apps

·        Social Media

·        Internet Browsers

 

Digital Forensic Analysts are worried about malware that can remotely take over features of a smartphone. With this ability, Hackers can take over, and use your phone’s camera and microphone. This lets them gain the ability to listen in to your conversations and watch you through your camera.

More times than not, these issues arise as the result of old software in need of an update. Therefore, older models of technology become out-of-date so quickly.

Security researchers have found another example on how hackers can spy on smartphone users. It might seem like a complicated process to accomplish the task of taking over a smartphone’s Camera and Microphone. This form of exploit works the same as any other form of malware. Firstly, you will be sent a message to download an app that seems real, or you could be re-directed to a secondary website. If you proceed with the download these programs attempt to gain control of the smartphone functions through security holes in the phone. Once the App is installed the hacker can collect surveillance information.

FDS’ Tips on preventing hackers from spying on your smartphone:

1.      Do not click on links sent from unknown numbers

2.      Do not click on pop-up windows with links

3.      Do not install Apps onto your phone if you are not sure who has manufactured them.

 

If you have any questions relating to our tips or computer forensics and cyber security contact FDS Global. You can reach us at our office at (954) 727-1957 or by email at RMoody@FDS.Global. Please feel free to visit our website at www.FDS.Global.


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“If You Don’t Use It You Lose It”

Hello blast readers,

The average person has often come to define themselves by the mobile devices he or she uses. Many marketing campaigns from Apple and Android have attempted to unify a person’s identity with the smart If you dont use it you lose itdevice they utilize.

If you walk into most office settings the one consistency is that every person has a mobile device somewhere on his or her desk. As mobile devices have become more and more depended on a common problem has arisen. This problem is data loss. The most frustrating dilemma facing an untrained Mobile device user is how to prevent data loss. The solution?

Always backup your data. This process is easier said than done. There are intricacies involved with this process. For instance should I backup my device to a computer or to the cloud? Well that depends on the following:

  1. Do you own the computer you plan to backup your device on?
  2. Do you have enough storage on the cloud?
  3. Do you own the phone that you wish to backup?

Lets start with “Do you own the computer you plan to backup your device on?” This is an important question to ask yourself before acting. If you are planning to use a company computer to backup your personal device you may run into big problems in the long run. If your time at this company comes to an end any of your personal data still residing on the company computer belongs to the company. The company can hire forensic experts to come in and extract the backup of your phone. So if you don’t own the computer do not back up to it!

The next important question to ask is do I have enough storage space on my cloud. This is important to know since companies do not offer unlimited cloud storage to their customers. The business of cloud storage is a booming business and companies like apple and Google want their cut, so no Free Storage For You!

Another important question to ask is do I want to tie my personal Apple/Google ID to a company phone. It is important to try to keep personal and business separate, because if you use a company provided phone for personal business then the company in turn has ownership and access to anything done on THEIR PHONE.

With a better understanding of these intricacies, the most important thing to know is always backup your phone. If you have questions regarding Phone backups, or if you are interested in watching a Help Me Howard Segment Featuring FDS Global’s insight into this process please visit: http://fds.global/multimedia/ or Contact us at our office.