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3 Ways to check if hackers can access your email account

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3 Ways to check if hackers can access your email account

Hackers these days have succeeded in carving an infamous reputation for themselves worldwide. Their activities in the last two decades makes internet security very crucial as far as any online activity is concerned. Top Tech players such as Facebook and Linkedin have had a fair share of website breaches.

The effect of these breaches cannot be over emphasised. The main motivation  is money or ransom payment where hackers harvest userdata such as usernames and passwords and auction it on the dark web unbeknown to the hacked victim. However, I believe most the dangerous group of hackers are those who do it for fun.  They get satisfaction from successfully launching Denial of Service(DoS) attacks on websites hosting account and stealing email account details to harvest debit or credit card information among other things. So you see, the bottom line is money after all.

How do I secure my email account

The truth is that, you can never be too careful. The hackers becoming more sophisticated every other day. However some safety precautions can be taken to ensure you login credentials are not in the public domain. A rule of thumb is that, if you can remember your username and  password, then it can definitely be hacked. Hackers often have the resources to conduct brute force guesses and may be successful at cracking your login details.

Cyber security expert often advice unsuspecting users to avoid using names of relatives and birthdays as login details. This is because such details can easily be sourced from social media accounts and offers hackers more chances of cracking your password by brute force.

It is often advised users constantly check if websites they have accounts with have been breached recently? We will discuss how to do that in the next section.

The use of verified auto generating passwords is also useful to acquire passwords that cannot be cracked by brute force.

According to experts,  one of the the best ways to  protect yourself online is to use unique and strong  passwords for every account such that even if your data is still secured  for other sites even one site is compromised.

How to check if hackers can access your email account

1.  Check if your email account has ever be ‘pwned’

‘pwned’ pronounced as pawned in the internet security circle is used as a slang for breached or compromised. This can be done on Troy Hunt’s haveibeenpwned website  who is a  Microsoft Regional Director.

https://enewsghana.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Ways-to-check-if-hackers-can-access-your-email-account_1.jpg

This website is a free resource which has record of breached data popular website where users can quickly check by inputting their email address as shown in the below and then instantly returns result such as ‘Oh no — pwned! which means your password might have been compromised in recent data breach if you havent changed it since the last time the breach occurred.  Result which say Good news — no pwnage found! may suggest you are safe from recent data breaches.

See below some the top breaches in history. If you have accounts with them and havent changed your credentials for a very long time. you may have been ‘pwned’ and need to act fast.

2. Check the estimated time your password can be cracked

There are  varying views from experts on how to secure you password from hackers but the truth is there is no surest single way to go by for in as much as top players such as LinkedIn, Adobe and Facebook have been ‘pwned’ before, it is rather easy to hack unsuspecting users who rely on the top directly or indirectly rely on the top players for securing their details.

An inexpensive and free way is to check how secure your password is by using Mark Wales’ estimated time to crack pasword website from his small Hadron Collider Project. This website gives the time a computer can take to crack your password in as low as nanoseconds!. As can be send a password such ‘enewsghana’ can be cracked in estimated time shown below!

Check how secure your password is

You are further given options on how to streghthen your password. Users are to note that  ‘these site is for educational use and also the developers mention that due to limitations of the technology involved, the results cannot always be accurate. Also tested password are not sent  the internet.

3. Test the complexity of your password

The use of tools to assist with making your password exist  and users need to take advantage of it to stay safe online. Many of such tools exist which are paid services. But my favourite free online tool for generating my password is the password generation tool  which offers users to create passwords from 6(weak) to 2048(unbelievable)! characters while meeting 9 stringent conditions. The website further gives you 39 tips on how to prevent hackers from cracking your credentials.

secure your password generator - enenewsghana

1password is also a useful website which autogenerates complex websites but free offer is only for 30 days and has the addesd advantage of being integrated with most websites so all passwords can be controlled at one place.

Macbooks normally suggest auto generating passwords which is strongly recommended.

 

In conclusion, data breaches is a matter of great concern these days an online users must make conscious effort not to fall victim of these hackers and gain satisfaction from stealing peoples data. In short using the checks provided above, one can likely generate a robust login credentials which will be be a great pain for hackers to crack by the combination of know methods such as brute force or dictionary attack method and social engineering.

Before you fall victim make sure, you are using a variety of characters, password length is not short, is not just a word!
Users can also opt for password managers which are being patronised lately, These include dashlane website which allows you to securely store upto 50 passwords on the free plan.

Stay safe online.

Source: Enewsghana.com

 

 

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KNUST students build robot that repels mosquitoes

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KNUST students build robot that repels mosquitoes

KNUST students build robot that repels mosquitoes

Each year, countries around the world – Africa, specifically, spend huge sums of money on mosquito control programmes and mosquito bite treatment.

Amid several interventions meant to eliminate the deadly insect, there are concerns about the chemicals’ toxins that are released into the environment.

There are even suggestions totally getting rid of mosquitoes will create imbalance in nature.

So what allows them to live and come into our space but disable them from biting?

Well, Biomedical Engineering students of Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology have a built a robotic mosquito repellent.

Second-year students, Joana Owusu-Appiah, Selinam Fiadjo and Daniella Asare call the robot ‘Anquito’, coined from ‘anti’ and ‘mosquito’.

“We realize there are so many measures to kill mosquitoes but we thought to ourselves, is it a problem of mosquitoes living or the fact that they’re in our space?

“Somebody is his room with mosquito coil and net but when there is light out, he goes out for fresh air and gets bitten.”

“What can we do for people who are outside their rooms and getting fresh air” they thought.

The robot, built with computer programming, emits ultrasonic sounds.

Ultrasound is not different from “normal” sound in its physical properties, except that humans cannot hear it. This limit varies from person to person and is approximately 20 kilohertz in healthy young adults. Ultrasound is used in many different fields, including detecting objects and measuring distance. Its imaging is often used in medicine.

Animals such as bats use ultrasound for locating prey and obstacles.

‘Anquito’ emits 38 kilohetz which is thought to ward off mosquitoes. It is equipped with sensors which stop and change direction after encountering an obstacle.

The students are working to create a miniature of the machine and employ artificial intelligence to make it smarter.

Source: Myjoyonline.com

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Google’s ethics board shut down

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Google’s ethics board shut down

An independent group set up to oversee Google’s artificial intelligence efforts, has been shut down less than a fortnight after it was launched.

The Advanced Technology External Advisory Council (ATEAC) was due to look at the ethics around AI, machine learning and facial recognition.

One member resigned and there were calls for another to be removed.

The debacle raises questions about whether firms should set up such bodies.

Google told the BBC: “It’s become clear that in the current environment, ATEAC can’t function as we wanted.

“So we’re ending the council and going back to the drawing board. We’ll continue to be responsible in our work on the important issues that AI raises, and will find different ways of getting outside opinions on these topics.”

There had been an outcry over the appointment of Kay Coles James, who is president of conservative thinktank The Heritage Foundation. Thousands of Google employees signed a petition calling for her removal, over what they described as “anti-trans, anti-LGBTQ and anti-immigrant” comments.

At the weekend, board member Prof Alessandro Acquisti resigned, tweeting: “While I’m devoted to research grappling with key ethical issues of fairness, rights and inclusion in AI, I don’t believe this is the right forum for me to engage in this important work.”

The panel had been announced at a conference at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and had planned to meet four times in 2019.

One of the eight members, Joanna Bryson, a professor from Bath University, expressed anger at Google’s decision to pull the plug.

She tweeted: “I thought there were enough smart people at Google that there must be some process for either communicating or improving decisions. But I was wrong, and the people who called me naive were right.”

Source: bbc.com

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Delta3 International partners IBM for maiden Africa InfoSec, IT leaders conference

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Delta3 International partners IBM for maiden Africa InfoSec, IT leaders conference

Delta3 International partners IBM for maiden Africa InfoSec, IT leaders conference

Delta3 International, a cybersecurity firm with operations in Europe and Africa, has signed a partnership with IBM, the global technology provider, for the upcoming Information Security (InfoSec) and IT Leaders Conference.

The conference, which comes off on March 28, at the Marriot Hotel, Accra from 8:30am to 4:30pm is under the theme Mitigating Cyber Risks through Effective Leadership and seeks to reposition information security as a key business enabler and also to share new knowledge in information technology and information security.

“We are pleased to announce our partnership with IBM for the forthcoming first Africa I.T InfoSec Leaders Conference. With IBM’s partnership, conference attendees or delegates will learn about the IBM Commercial Cyber Aptitude Test (CCAT) product.

Learn how the CCAT can help your organisation to identify talent suited to roles in cybersecurity. The CCAT will help give a snapshot of an employee suitability for roles within Cyber Security in your organization,” a statement from Delta3 International said.

Dele Aden, Managing Partner at Delta3 International, earlier in an interview said, the objective of the conference is to get leaders of businesses and various divisional leaders in businesses to have conversations on cybersecurity and how everyone can be prepared when something happens.

“What we are doing is getting the leaders of businesses together, IT leaders, information security leaders, risk, audit, business manager, and HR leaders together at the very first Africa InfoSec and IT leaders conference in March 28.

We are having thought leaders to deliver addresses from Europe and other Western nations, Asia and Africa who have experienced major attacks for only US$250 per delegate, which include coffee and buffet lunch breaks,” he said.

The conference will have breakout sessions on different issues and these groups will be focusing on how to move organisations forward so that more and more organisations will take cybersecurity seriously, take customer data seriously and understand the challenges coming down when it comes cybersecurity.

Topics to be discussed include Anatomy of Cyber Attack; Africa Cyber Security Landscape and Threat Trends 2019; Mitigating Cyber Threats Through Effective Leadership and BCP; Digital Transformation: From AI & IOT to CLOUD & Blockchain; Mitigating Cyber Threats Through Business Continuity Planning; HR Leadership – The Role of HR Mitigating Cyber Security Threats from within; and Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC) What is it and what should it be?

With delegates expected from Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria, UK, US, South Africa and other countries across the globe, speakers include Dr. Adrian Venables, from UK Defence Cyber School; Dele Aden, Managing Partner, Delta3 International; D. Nalon Kaine, Cyber Security Coordinator – Min of Telecom, Liberia; and Anita Wiafe-Asinor, HR Consultant & Managing Partner, OML Africa.

Other speakers are Komla Mike Etchi, Senior ICT Trainer and Keynote Speaker – Ghana; Kwame A. Opoku, Award-Winning Futurist, who will also be a Keynote Speaker; a Keynote Speaker from IBM, USA; and a Keynote Speaker from the Bank of Ghana.

Komla Mike Etchi, Senior ICT Trainer, in an interview, noted that since Delta3’s arrival in Ghana, the focus and emphasis have been on awareness creation about cybersecurity and so far, the message is getting home but more still needs to be done.

“The problem we have as a country is preparedness and compliance and we are still very far away. That is why we are getting all the industry heads in one room so we can discuss how we can best to protect ourselves.

We have been too countless organisations and they feel that they cannot be attacked but what we fail to realise is that the cyber world has no boundaries. Some guy in a basement somewhere in central Europe could be preying on vulnerabilities and attack. We have a task on our hands as to preparedness and compliance,” he said.

Source: Delta3 International

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