Over the past decade, there have been numerous incidents where social media accounts of famous celebrities and politicians got compromised. The recent breach has been on Twitter, where miscreants got access to the data of scores of important figures including high-profile personalities like Bill Gates, Kanye West, Warren Buffet, and others.
So the question “Can our social media account be compromised?” borders naivety. Yes, of course. It is well within the realm of possibility. If those who temper with happen to be in your acquaintance, the hack gets quite easy.
In this article, we will discuss with you the different methods hackers use to get access to your social media accounts. Social engineering goes into almost all methods we will discuss below. It is simply the manipulation of humans to extract sensitive information from them. The targets are tricked to reveal sensitive information rather than directly attacking the systems. And as it often happens, humans are the most vulnerable link in the chain of cybersecurity.
One of the most primitive ways the culprits use is to gain access to social accounts by requesting reset. Here, it is quite impossible for them to get access without knowing enough about you. The hack becomes a lot easier if the user has not activated 2 step verification.
The request initiated for a password reset results in an automated response where the system allows for different methods of authentication. Unless the offender has access to your personal belongings like your laptop or a smartphone, he/she will not go for email or phone verification. Rather the easiest way is to skip to the security question where one can fill in your personal information to change the password of the account.
You might have experienced the autocomplete function in your phone keyboard, which is surprisingly accurate most of the time. Similarly, an internet browser saves the password for your ease. It is handy for you that your keyboard or browser keep the log so you won’t have to type similar phrases or password again and again. But it also leads to a major vulnerability.
Keyloggers are malicious software that keeps tabs of your data, especially of your sensitive passwords. If the miscreants make you install one of the similar applications to your smartphone or the computer, you will enable them to extract all the sensitive data within minutes.
This is a one-time old method to get access to someone’s sensitive information. What miscreants usually do is they create a fake login page. The naive targets are usually informed via an email that their account has just been compromised and they have to login again to reset the password.
Panicked, the target rushes to fill in all their sensitive details on the page attached to the mail. And then in the matter of secs, the miscreants have access to the password of the social media account or whatever account they targeted.
This one is quite simple, and it needs the person to be in our acquaintance. The offender has to notify you whenever you are typing your password. He/she might have to get a hint of the password length and a few alphabets or symbols. Next, they try different password combinations to access directly to your account.
Brute Attack is losing popularity as social accounts these days allow for a limited number of entries.
Spy apps are growing in number and getting more and more powerful with each passing day. All the offenders have to do is to get access to your smartphone, install these apps, and hide them from view. These will synchronize with the applications on offenders’ desktop and they will have your minute to minute activity details.
These apps allow offenders to view someone’s Facebook Messages, keep tabs on their browsing activities, and can even trace their location. Most of the time parents or suspicious partners install these apps in the smartphones of their children or cheating partners respectively. So, you need to be more conscious of your closed ones.