You Could Be Hacked

We assume that hackers directly target people rather than, for example, sending out phishing emails to everyone they can get an email address for, or leaving an infected file ready for someone to download when they’re trying to look at a website with discounted computers.

The vast majority of hacking is for quick financial gain.

This post originally appeared on Campus.ie

Young people don’t care much about data security according to a recent study by Norton Antivirus.

Of a poll of 500 people under 35, Norton found that while young people were concerned about their online security and privacy, they were unlikely to do anything to protect themselves online.

72% did not have security software on their device, 49% had low privacy settings on social media sites, 72% did not regularly back up their files and 48% admitted to using variations of the same password for every site.

It is therefore unsurprising that 55% of those polled said that had been affected by a computer virus, 26% by a phishing scam and 14% by ransomware attacks.

Given that young people are the most tech-savvy generation, why are we leaving ourselves open to online attacks?

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No Safe Harbour

What is ‘safe harbour’ and what does overturning it mean for our data?

The European Union has struck down ‘safe harbour’ rules which allowed the transfer of European data to the US

A decision by the Court of Justice of the European Union will lead to tougher privacy laws for EU citizens.

Previously, US companies such as Google and Facebook would transfer data received by their European headquarters in Ireland to data storage facilities in the US.

This data could be accessed and searched by the US Government through laws such as § 1881 FISA, which let them target data of “persons reasonably believed to be located outside the United States to acquire foreign intelligence information.”

However, under EU law data could only be sent to another country if they provided ‘adequate protection’ of this personal data.

Max Schrems, an Austrian law student, brought a case to the Irish High Court arguing that the transfer of data by Facebook to the US breached EU law.

Schrems took the case in the aftermath of the revelations by Edward Snowden that the US had engaged in mass collection of personal data of both US and foreign individuals.

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