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Another month passes and a lot of things have transpired in the IT world yet again.

Data breaches and the stealing of private credit card information from ‘trusted’ organisations such as Target Corp who had over 40million credit card numbers stolen from their systems, plus personal information from another 70million customers begs the question :

Is online shopping safe enough to use?

When ‘trusted’ organisations fail to properly secure our data, who ‘can’ we trust?

In January there was also an infection of malware known as ‘ChewBacca’. This malware targeted small retailers in 11 countries including Australia, and stole data of more than 49,000 credit cards from these sites before it was shut down.

Looking at EtherTech’s own firewall logs, we have people trying to hack into our systems every minute of the day. From all over the world.

How safe is your data?

What would happen if someone managed to get into your Intellectual or your financial property?

Many of our clients today have remote access to their network so they can access corporate resources from home.  Life is easier, but it exposes you to more risk.  Unless all your systems are up to date or use 2-stage authentication, then you’re exposing yourself to attack.

Another serious matter is using the same password across many sites.  Simple solution – DON’T DO IT!  Hackers might hack an internet forum you’re on, extract the email address and password then try using that to access corporate resources, Facebook or even your Bank details.

Online payment gateways have come a long way as well. We recommend that everyone with an online store, or those who are purchasing online to only use reputable payment gateways like PayPal or e-way, or those that are Visa or Mastercard approved, or those that use an SMS notification service and have an existing high banking reputation.

The last thing you want is to lose your hard earned money in fraudulent transactions and have all your cards cancelled.

To combat additional risk and exposure a timely reminder is that Microsoft’s Windows XP WILL BECOME END OF LIFE from April 8th 2014.  Microsoft are now issuing ‘serious warnings’ to all users “We won’t sugar-coat it: If you are running Windows XP after April 8, 2014, you are putting your business at risk — and please don’t believe anyone who claims that quick fixes can replace a critical OS update,”

Microsoft said in their latest campaign document.

Surprisingly, there are still over 29% of PC’s globally still running Windows XP.

We can guarantee that the hackers out there are just biding their time waiting for the deadline so they can launch their malware without fear of Microsoft fixing the issues.

Please make sure that you adhere these warnings if you haven’t already and stay safe out there in cyber-land!