Hackers are constantly finding ways to steal your data, and it’s almost always about one thing – money.
In fact, the price paid for this stolen information is staggering. We usually talk about how these data breaches happen and what their impact is after the fact.
I want to focus on how much your information is worth to these creeps and what these criminals do with the data once they steal it.
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What is the price of data on the dark web?
According to the Dark Web Price Index, compiled by Privacy Affairs, a person’s personal information is worth about $1,010. They arrived at this number after calculating the value of Dark Web product prices. Some of the products calculated include the following:
- Stolen online banking logins: just $50
- Credit card details and related information: between $17-$120
- Online Banking Login: $65
- Hacked Facebook account: $45
- Cloned VISA with PIN: $20
- Stolen PayPal account details, $1000 minimum balance: $20
- Hacked web and entertainment services like Uber and Netflix: up to $40
According to Verizon’s annual data breach report, 86% of data breaches involve money and 55% are committed by organized crime groups.
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How do hackers buy this data?
Hackers will buy whatever data they’re interested in, whether it’s social security numbers or private banking information.
The price of data depends on the type of data and the level of supply and demand. The most common way they can purchase this data is through either Bitcoin or Western Union.
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Once data is purchased, where does it go?
Where the data goes depends on what the hacker who stole it wants to do with it. Some will obtain names, addresses and social security numbers to commit identity theft and open credit cards and loans.
Others will want personal information to get free healthcare or even obtain someone’s medical license to appear to have a medical background. And others will just take the data they want and sell it to others to make more money for themselves.
The number of reasons is endless. However, it is important to know how to protect yourself from these data breaches.
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How can I prevent this from happening to me?
The best way to protect yourself from having your data compromised is to have antivirus protection installed on all your devices. My top pick is TotalAV, and you can get a limited-time deal for CyberGuy readers: $19 your first year (80% off) for the TotalAV Antivirus Pro package.
Check out my review of the best antivirus for Windows, Mac, Android and iOS devices by searching for ‘BestAntivirus’ at CyberGuy.com by clicking on the magnifying glass icon at the top of my website.
Related: Free antivirus: should you use it?
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Identity theft protection
Companies like my #1 choice, Identity Guard, can track your Social Security Number (SSN) and alert you if it’s being sold on the dark web or used to open an account. They can also help you freeze your bank and credit card accounts to prevent further unauthorized use by criminals. The sooner you know, the sooner you can stop the damage.
Check out my tips and top picks for how to protect yourself from identity theft by searching for ‘identity theftat CyberGuy.com by clicking on the magnifying glass icon at the top of my site.
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Be sure to use strong passwords. Using the same password, no matter how complicated you make it, leaves you vulnerable.
If one account is compromised, then every other account using the same password is potentially in the hands of criminals who will take full advantage of you.
Check out my tips and picks for the best password managers by searching “best password managers at CyberGuy.com by clicking on the magnifying glass icon at the top of my site.
Update your software and devices
Finally, be sure to regularly update your software on all your devices to get the latest security patches.
Have hackers stolen your data? We’d love to hear your story. Contact us at CyberGuy.com/contact.
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