Ross is worried he may have been hacked after searching for the Quicken Support number online and calling them. Could he have gotten a phony number? Leo says never Google phone numbers unless you go directly to their website. Leo says that hackers will buy ads for specific search error messages, and it could be that Ross had been compromised after giving them access to scanning the computer. Leo says it would be prudent to scan his system. Before doing that, since Ross is very savvy, he could do a search with Malwarebytes first. Ross did and found nothing. That's good news.
A teenage hacker discovered flaws in his school's educational Blackboard software and presented his findings with the eye of improving security. He made a presentation at the Black Hat Hackers convention in Las Vegas. But while he could have changed his grades, he opted not so. But he did break into a college network to change his admissions status to "accepted" to make a point. And while the software company lauded the teen for discovering the flaws, he was suspended at school.
Chris is having trouble loading his Windows profile as he logs into his Windows 7 computer. He worries he's been hacked. Leo says that more likely, it's a flakey hard drive that's preventing the data from being read. Windows 7 is now over 10 years old and if he hasn't changed that hard drive in that amount of time, it's likely a bad hard drive. Boot into safe mode and see if the profile can load. If he can, then he may just have a corrupt profile. In all likelihood though, it's a bad hard drive that's about to die. But Chris has another problem.
Pat has a google home hub and she thinks it's been hacked. What can she do? Leo says that it's likely that someone has hacked Pat's Google account. Leo recommends changing her password and turning on 2-factor authentication. Add an account recovery number and email as well. That will keep someone from changing your password. Leo also recommends turning off "share your device" in the settings and set up Voice Match.
Suzanne uses Hotmail and all of a sudden, she's getting hundreds of spam from subscribed newsletters. She also got an email about an order for a GoPro camera bought at Walmart. Leo suspects that someone doesn't like Suzanne or has stolen her identity. It's a new scam where hackers overwhelm your email address with bulk emails to distract you from the actual identity theft going on. It's called "Chaff." The idea is to be so overwhelmed with spam and bulk emails, you miss the stolen credit card activity. Shame on companies that allow signups without a double opt-in via email.
Mara was a victim of identity theft, and just narrowly avoided having her brokerage account drained. Leo says that Mara should change her password and turn on 2 factor authentication right away. Leo suspects the bad guys got her information from a database breach like the Collection #1 or the Marriott hack. Leo also suggests going to haveIbeenpwned.com/passwords and see if her passwords have been compromised and are known.
Yesterday's story about Collection #1 - a package of hacked email passwords, is actually now reported to be a few years old, so the damage is not as great as previously believed. But Leo still says that it's a wise idea to go to HaveIBeenPwned.com/passwords and see if your account has been hacked. And then change your password. In fact, it may be a good idea to change it anyway, and turn on 2 factor authentication while you're at it.
According to the creator of HaveIBeenPwned.com, over 21 million passwords have been hacked and revealed on the dark web. Leo says to find out if your passwords have been hacked and stolen, head over to https://haveibeenpwned.com/passwords and input your passwords. It'll let you know if your passwords have been hacked.
George got an email saying that his email account has been compromised, but it shows an old email. Leo says it's an old scam that is designed to scare him into sending the hackers money. If he's concerned, he should change his email password.
He can also go to HaveIBeenPwned.com to see if his email has been legitimately hacked. But changing the password will fix it. And while he's at it, he should turn on 2 Factor Authentication. He can simply ignore the extortion email, though.
Cheryl is concerned that with the recent Facebook security breach, her account will be hacked. Leo says it's more likely that someone will counterfeit her account, lifting her images, and change it just slightly to fool people she knows to friend it. Facebook has reset all 30 million accounts so that users would have to change their passwords. Leo also would recommend turning on 2 factor authentication.