The end of the week this week also signals the end of the working month. As we move from June to July (wow we’re half way through the year already) we’ve experienced a particularly topical week in terms of cybersecurity.
Without further ado, let’s look at the subjects that have concerned I.T. professionals in offices around the world this week.
British Parliament suffers cyber-attack
Making national news, as you would expect, Parliament was hit by a cyber-attack - just one month after 48 NHS Trusts were affected. This week the BBC is reporting that up to 90 users were involved and that the attack was due to “weak passwords”.
Officials disabled remote access to the emails of MPs and launched an investigation into the cause of the attack. We await more info as things stand.
International Trade Secretary Liam Fox said: "We have seen reports in the last few days of even cabinet ministers' passwords being for sale online."
"We know that our public services are attacked so it is not at all surprising that there should be an attempt to hack into parliamentary emails.
"And it's a warning to everybody, whether they are in Parliament or elsewhere, that they need to do everything possible to maintain their own cyber-security."
The threat is real and it seems as though more and more are experiencing problems each day.
Router passwords can be easily guessed by hackers
Experts have discovered that router default passwords can be easily guessed by hackers. Allegedly more than 800,000 Virgin Media routers are at risk but the problem also encompasses BT, Sky, TalkTalk and other suppliers. Customers are being advised to change their router passwords as the recent Which? investigation found home networks and connected appliances could be accessed once passwords were guessed.
Advice: Change your password from the default one to an alternative of more than 12 characters, using upper and lowercase letters and numbers.
You can now stop Google from reading your emails for ads
Google wouldn’t do that would they? Yes, they would. The company has controversially scanned its Gmail users’ emails in the past in order to target its advertisements towards the things you had previous shown interest in. This week however, the company explained it would end its practice of snooping and people are understandably happy about the news.
Being as big as the company now is, with 1.2 billion users, it seems as if Google has decided to tweak its strategy. In the blog post that announced the news, the company added that it will “keep privacy and security paramount,” for its users. Perhaps recent times has given the company a new focus.
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