According to the digital association Bitkom, in 2018, half of all internet users fell victim to cyber-crime. And just under half were affected by illegal use of their personal data or disclosure of their data to third parties. A username complete with password is an access-all-areas pass to the internet, we all know that. But that a name and date of birth are enough to easily cause a great deal of damage? Perhaps less well known.
According to the German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI), a date of birth and a name are all you need to place orders in many online shops. Shipping address? No problem. The thief simply chooses a parcel station and enters a random billing address, ensuring that the receipt either never arrives or is returned to the sender, who can find out the real address of the supposed customer via directory inquires—meaning that the unsuspecting customer is hit with unexpected costs.
The BSI recommends a range of ways to find out whether your password and e-mail address have been hacked through data theft or made public through security gaps in online databases—often the springboard to more criminal activities. If you’ve been affected, the advice is to change your password as quickly as possible.
Easy to remember—and easy to hack! The most commonly leaked passwords as recorded by the Hasso-Plattner Institute.
Screenshot haveibeenpwned.com/passwords after entering „password123“.
You’ve heard it all before, but do you actually do it? Find out how to choose a secure password here.
A different password for every service—sounds like a nightmare? With a password manager it doesn’t have to be. And there are also many free versions available. Here you can read about other steps you can take to protect your digital identity.
Received a payment reminder you know nothing about? Bank account cleaned out? Facebook hacked? BSI has created a useful set of guidelines on how to act in these emergency situations.
Bechtle update editorial team
Published on Jan 18, 2019.