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We live in the digital equivalent of the wild west. If you have any doubts as to that, just look at the recent ransomware attack that swept the globe.
We’re no strangers to sophisticated forms of hacking and their catastrophic outcomes. Whether it’s sensitive emails leaking, a country’s entire system of power grids shut down or another country’s (ahem) election getting tampered with, we’ve all seen the results. And with ransomware, the trend towards hacking might be even more nefarious than ever before.
What is ransomware?
Imagine you go to your computer, and all of a sudden you can’t access any of your personal files. You can’t open documents, you can’t look at your photos, you can’t log into anything. You probably can’t even type into your keyboard. Then you get a message: you can’t access any of your data until you pay a certain amount of money in ransom – usually in Bitcoin, or some other untraceable currency.
Before you go all Liam Neeson on your computer, you should know that ransomware leverages a unique private key known only by your attacker that encrypts all your files. As many as 150 countries and huge companies like FedEx, Merck, Cadbury and AP Moller-Maersk were affected.
How do I protect myself?
Regular backups of your data and doing all those pesky security updates from your trusted OS is a good place to start. But it’s tricky to protect yourself from ransomware as it actively seeks to defeat anti-virus protection.
The best means of protecting yourself is to practice online security best practices. Use your best sense of discernment and intuition around fishy hyperlinks. Never fill out your personal information on a website that’s not HTTPS, and update your software and your passwords.
Another solid means of protection is using a VPN, like Disconnect: Lifetime Premium Subscription. Disconnect is a prime pick as a VPN for a few reasons:
1. It improves your browsing speed and internet experience.
You might not be aware of this, but your browsing speeds are usually slowed down by trackers and malware requesting access to your device. Since Disconnect blocks tracking requests from latching themselves to your device, the websites you browse load faster, and your devices’ batteries last longer. It’s a win win.
2. It secures your data and cloaks your identity.
Disconnect prevents your data from being harvested, whether it’s for aggressive advertising or more malicious reasons. There’s no more important time to ensure your online data is protected, and Disconnect is one of the most reliable solutions. It even encrypts your connection and masks your IP address so you can maintain your online privacy.
3. It unlocks geo-restricted content.
Planning on traveling this summer? Disconnect hides your location so you can still watch region-blocked content (Game of Thrones, anyone?).
Get Disconnect: Lifetime Premium Subscription for $49 from the Daily Dot store now. That’s 90 percent off the usual price of $500.
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