Security researchers found an open backdoor access to Dell’s highly touted Sonicwall Global Management System which monitors enterprise network devices. That led me to this conclusion. If you’re online in any capacity, you’re not safe.
Whether it’s having your devices snooped while you’re at Starbucks, or having your Facebook account or Apple ID hacked, or your bank account drained, or your credit card information stolen, I’ve come to this obvious conclusion. Doing anything online puts you, your personal information, and especially your financial data at risk.
Nothing is safe.
We’re moving into the age of relative safety and relative security. But if nothing is safe, and nothing is, how can some aspects of an online life be safer than others? It’s the other way around. Some devices and services are less prone to attack and compromise than others.
Here it is in a nutshell. If the government and large corporations cannot keep their data safe from hackers, spooks, and thieves, how can we keep our information safe?
We cannot. Safety and security are relative. And even with quantum computing and unbreakable encryption methods around the corner, we’re still not safe. As they say, a chain is only as strong as the weakest link, so wherever that weak link is, exploitation will follow.
What’s interesting in all the security issues that have become public in the past year or so– F.B.I. vs. Apple Inc., is a good example– is that authorities want a backdoor into your data, but cannot even protect their own data from outside intrusion. Hell, thanks to Edward Snowden, we now know the government cannot protect their own data from inside intrusion.
What’s the weakest link?
Snowden is the example. Humans. That’s why viruses are less important these days than phishing attacks.
the fraudulent practice of sending emails purporting to be from reputable companies in order to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers.
Humans are the weakest link, and multi-layered safeguards to access cannot seem to be foolproof because fools are too ingenious.
Alright, in a world where everyone is out to get your information wherever it may be, what’s the best course of action? Paranoia. After all, if everyone is out to get you, paranoia is the right attitude to have. A little paranoia works great as a time honored method to monitor what goes on around you. Check credit card statements. Check accounts for attempts to login; attempts not initiated by you. Make note of where you use a credit card and track down any activity that may seem suspicious. Don’t use a debit card. Credit cards have more built-in safeguards and liability to loss or theft is less.
See? In an era where nothing is completely safe, a little paranoia goes a long way.