Last updated: December 31, 2022
If we are to believe the cartoonish portrait painted by the media, the hacker is a highly intelligent and desocialized being who has revenge to take on his neighbors. But the reality is more diverse.
The hacker is not always a criminal, but a gifted and passionate programmer, able to understand a program and locate its flaws. He is therefore an expert capable of finding answers to problems deemed insoluble.
On the other hand, the hacker that everyone fears is rather someone who breaks into public or private networks to take control of PCs or outright steal data. Their motives are not always very clear whether some information is marketable, it seems that the facts of fame is also of great value in the hacker community.
Your PC interests hackers
Of course, you probably think that the contents of your hard drive are of no interest to any hacker. But while your vacation photos may not be sensitive data, that doesn't stop your machine from being a target! Because the computing power of your computer interests the hacker to the highest point.
Experience shows, for example, that the combination of several dozen PCs gives sufficient power to carry out a DDOS attack very effectively. This type of attack consists of interrupting a Web service and saturating the servers that host it with requests.
Hackers first take control of hundreds or even thousands of permanently connected PCs - why not yours? Then the order is given to all these machines to send the same request at the same time to the same server. The server is getting many more requests that it cannot satisfy.
If you have a permanent ADSL or cable connection, you are a potential victim. Being connected allows you to take remote control of your PC without your knowledge.
A permanent unprotected connection is like an open door for a thief.
Your connection is made up of a series of ports. Each of these ports is assigned to a particular task. It is linked both to a data transfer protocol (FTP or HTTP for example) and to a specific application (browser, messaging, etc.). Many of these ports remain unoccupied most of the time. Nothing prevents a skilled person from using it to visit your hard drive, copy your data or install a spyware program.
Hackers use software (For example Nmap coupled with Metasploit) that relentlessly scan the network for vulnerabilities in your operating system..
The only way to guard against attacks is to lock down ports. And this is the role of the fire.
Windows includes just such software: the Internet connection firewall. It is responsible for controlling the information exchanged between the Internet and your PC. If you stay logged in, it is vital to enable this feature.
The best antivirus is YOU
There is no such thing as "100% protection". You will therefore have "maximum protection" depending on your behavior and your caution on the internet. Here are some tips that can greatly improve the security of your computer.
- Use a browser other than Internet Explorer. For example, Mozilla Firefox or Chrome.
- Keep your system up to date. The more up-to-date your OS, the less likely it is to get infected.
- Make regular backups. The only weapon in the event of an attack or failure is data backup. Think about it!
- Stay alert and careful with cracks, warez sites, pornographic sites and peer to peer like Utorrent.
- Disable the USB ports, forget about them, and your PC will have a better chance of staying clean.
- Do not open email attachments unless you are absolutely sure that they are harmless
- Prefer a limited account rather than an administrator account. By using a limited account, dangerous programs will not be able to install because they will not have the necessary rights.