The Feast of the Sacrifice this year is a good long holiday for millions in Turkey, however, the experts strongly warn against hackers those who will be away from their home for the long holiday period. The experts point that mobile phones, tablets, laptops use a wireless network and hackers (a “hacker” is more frequently used to describe someone who discovers and takes advantage of a weakness in a computer system or network) track the wireless internet communication and gain access to people’s bank accounts and credit card information.
Assoc. Prof. Süleyman Kondakçı, Head of Department of Computer Engineering, Izmir University of Economics (IUE), said, “We connect to internet with smart phones, smart televisions, computers, laptops through ADSL modems at home, at work. ADSL modems are Wi-Fi equipment. If we fail to set up strong passwords, they can be easily accessible to others. Hackers can access to all computers, laptops, smart devices connected to our modem. They can perform illegal acts. In this case, the owner of the equipment/ modem line is legally bound to punishment.”
‘Choose a strong password’
Assoc. Prof. Kondakçı stated that choosing a password was one of the key measures in preventing hackers, however, they kept inventing new methods to blindside people. Assoc. Prof. Kondakçı recommended turning of the power of the equipment when away from home for a long holiday. “An evil twin (a fraudulent Wi-Fi access point which allows hackers to steal your personal information) mounted nearby acts like providing a free internet access and collects passwords, or directs you to a pirated website. It offers cheap and canny items and charges huge amounts to your credit cards. They can even have access to all credit card information. Such things may happen when you click on a link sent to your e-mail,” said Assoc. Prof. Kondakçı.
‘Watch out for free applications’
Assoc. Prof. Kondakçı also mentioned that some of the free applications on smart phones might not be safe. He said that such applications gathered personal information such as ID numbers, birth registration information, etc. Assoc. Prof. Kondakçı stated the following:
“Account number and passwords when doing an online banking transaction on smart phones can be stolen by this software. Such software can also reveal your internet profile such as most frequently visited shopping sites, bank web addresses. For example, they may send you an e-mail on behalf of your bank stating that it is important and want you to click on the link they send. That click would direct you to a fake website. You believe that you have entered a secure website. You enter in your bankcard number and your password, not realizing that the website that you are using is a fake website, which resembles the official bank website. The hackers than easily enter the real website of your bank and empty your account with your personal info.”
‘For a Safer Internet Use’
Assoc. Prof. Kondakçı, who recommends online shopping from secure sites, said, “We need to turn the power of Wi-Fi equipment when we don’t use them. We need to avoid clicking on the “pop-ups” on our phones or computers, likewise, the links and similar things on our e-mails. We need to turn off the location button when it is not necessary.”