Protecting yourself from cyber attacks - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Protecting yourself from cyber attacks

(Source: Raycom Media) (Source: Raycom Media)
(KFVS) -

Cyber Attacks are happening more and more often. Will you be the next victim?

A Heartland expert we talked with said the attacks may have the potential of taking down the internet, but we're not there yet.

Norse is an organization that tracks cyber attacks. This map shows attacks happening right now across the world.

So as you watch it happen here in real time, how do you protect yourself?

"I have no cash on me and I don't know what I'd do with my life. I mean like my whole school work I use the internet every day," Tristan Cronenbold, freshman at Southeast Missouri State University, said.

For him, access to the internet is a necessity.

"I mean it's kind of hard to imagine the world today without the internet you can't bank, you can't shop online, there's no Instagram, I mean come on," Cronenbold said.

Heartland expert Jeff Hay said Tristan is far from alone, almost everyone relies on being connected to the internet every day.

"As devices become more prevalent the risk and the threat landscape becomes larger," Hay said.

Right now, he doesn't think any hacker has the ability to disable the entire internet, but said it may be a future possibility.

"We saw last week with that dyn problem that they had, you could still get to those websites if they still had the IP address," Hay said. "But in that particular instance, you couldn't type in google.com or twitter.com I know twitter was down for a while it may have the potential to do that but I don't think we're they're just yet."

And said knowing how to keep yourself safe on the internet might protect you in the long run, like having a complex password or installing protective software.

"Traditionally, a lot of people have anti-virus on their computers, they're familiar with that," Hay said. "But, they may need to look at getting additional products such as a malware client or having a firewall."

Experts said last week's attack actually used thousands of home DVR's to overload different servers.

Maybe not everyone has a DVR, but almost everyone has a phone and protecting ourselves is a daily task, like having a complex password or installing protective software.

"Traditionally, a lot of people have anti-virus on their computers, they're familiar with that. But, they may need to look at getting additional products such as a malware client or having a firewall."    

Experts recommend Malwarebytes and Windows Defender.

Hay said cyber attacks are becoming more common, being aware of that is half the battle.

"Overload the servers at dyn so that no one can get to those servers and use them, they overload them so much that they crash and in that event that they don't work anymore, data breach is another, there's lots of different kinds," he said.

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