2.2 billon usernames and associated passwords in circulation


In a recent story in Wired Magazine it was highlighted that the hacker world is circulating usernames and passwords for more than 2.2 billion accounts.  The article went on to highlight over 845 GB worth of personal data (including social security numbers, birthdates, etc.) was available on the dark net.

Per Internet World Stats, there are just over 4.2 billion internet users (or roughly 55.1% of the world’s population.  This means more than half of all internet users have had their internet account information stolen.  (source: https://www.internetworldstats.com/stats.htm)

What does this mean for your small business?  Besides the need to change your passwords, business owners now more than ever must be on-guard for internet scams and theft through electronic means.

Crooks are always seeking ways to take advantage of people to make a quick buck.  I often wonder if the cure for cancer would have been found already if only people would deflect energy from stealing stuff to fixing things?  But I digress!

Too many small business owners feel they are too small to want to waist time hacking—or if the hackers do get in, they feel there is nothing of value.  WRONG, your small business website is an excellent place to launch attacks.  It has bandwidth and provides the hacker anonymity.  So when the attack is discovered, the consequences are brought down on you and not them.  Your business internet ability can be turned off or severely restricted because someone is using your website to launch their attack on some big business.

The numbers above are a little misleading.  If only half of the world’s population are impacted, then 50/50 odds are pretty good.  Well, it gets worse.  In North America, the population is just over 363.8 million people and just over 345.6 million have internet accounts.  That means 95% of people living in North America have an internet account and most likely your account has been compromised.

What can you do?  Scan your website today for malware.  If you don’t know how to do this, contact our offices and we can help or reach out to your local community college and ask for help.

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