What Happens When Your Protectors Are Hacked?

While none of us like to think that we live in a nanny state, we do expect our governments to protect us from some types of harm. There is a difference in being told what to do in every step of your life and having the government behind you performing some types of essential duties. We all need a little help every now and then and it is good to know that it is there if we need it.

But it is just not government that we are talking about. For example, if you are a computer user then there is a good chance that you surf the internet with both a firewall and an antivirus turned on. What happens when both of these devices are bypassed by a malicious black hat hacker? What happens when you do not have any protection anymore and your computer is vulnerable? This is what we are going to talk about in this article.

What Happens When Your Protectors Are Hacked?

When you have security software installed into your computer you expect it to be able to keep you safe. If it does not then you have the right to feel that it has not done its job right. But there are certain instances where your software is going to fail. Sometimes the threat that it is facing is too new and it does not have the right upgrade for it yet. Or maybe the threat has been created to combat that particular type of security software. If the company has someone gunning for it and it does not know it yet then it is pretty hard for the company to offer good protection.

Norton source code

This is what happened recently. Black hat hackers were able to get behind the servers of a pretty popular security software company and they were able to cause havoc to their machines. And not only that, they were able to steal a lot of the source code for one of their main products. For those people out there who do not know, the source code of a software project allows the bad guy to see how the product was made. This means that they are able to find any holes that are in there easier. So now that the bad guys had a way to go around their product, it made their security product useless.

But it does not take source code for a black hat hacker to be able to find a weakness around a software product that is supposed to be defending you. Actually, most of the time the source code of the software product is not available for them to be able to reference. So instead they poke and prod at the product until they are able to find a hole. Then after that they are able to make their attacks more effective.

IPSs and email

So far we have been talking exclusively about software protection. But what happens when the same thing happens to the different entities that you get your online services from. For example what happens when your ISP is hacked and now all of your data is available for the bad guys to look at? Or what happens if the email provider that you use is hacked and the same thing happens. This type of violation is just as bad as if your antivirus program was attacked. As a matter of fact it might be even worse. These types of services have years and years of data on you. A bad guy who is able to get behind these machines will be able to exploit a lot more information about you.
So what can you do about it?

Due diligence

The only thing that we can suggest to do about it is to make sure that the companies that you deal with make security their highest priority. When you are on the internet you trust your data to a lot of different individuals. That is just how the internet works. So you must make sure that the people you deal with are trustworthy. There is always going to be an individual who is able to slip through the cracks but overall you will find that most people and companies are trustworthy. So you have to do your due diligence to make sure that you are dealing with the right people.

You can be as careful as you want on the web. You can install the strongest antivirus and the strongest firewall. But to use the advantage of the web there is going to be a time and place where your data is in someone else’s hands. When that does happen you just have to hope that they can be trusted.

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.

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