20 Cyber Security Secrets Hackers Don’t Want You to Know

Hacking is something that started out as an occasional data breach but has now turned into a common occurrence. Nobody online is safe.

While anyone could be a victim of hackers, it does not mean you can’t protect yourself. There are plenty of programs and devices available designed to keep you from getting hacked available in the market. However, the best thing you can do to protect yourself is to arm yourself with knowledge.

Here are 20 Cyber Security Secrets that hackers don’t want you to know.

1) They make an effort to make their emails look very personal

Spear Phishing, which is the practice of sending targeted emails asking you to share financial information and passwords, can be extremely sophisticated. Back in the day, emails were prone to spelling and punctuation mistakes. That is not the case today. 

Hackers will go to great effort to personalize the email by calling you by your name, mentioning your professional title, asking you about a project you are working on or making the email look like it is coming from a company you bank with shop from.

How to protect yourself?

You should look out for subtle clues that something is wrong, such as a link with one character changed or an email address with only one character changed. You can hover your mouse over hyperlinks to see where they lead. Don’t click on a link that you don’t recognize or trust.

If you notice an email that urges you to download something you did not request, it is best to delete it.

2) Be wary of Bluetooth devices

Leaving Bluetooth enabled can allow hackers to connect or pair with your phone and manipulate it to steal your data.

How to protect yourself?

After using Bluetooth:

  1. Turn it off.
  2. When pairing with another Bluetooth device, set your visibility to off, or not detectable.
  3. Make sure Bluetooth pairing requires a security code.

3) Hackers are patient and will take advantage of tools

Hackers are skilled at playing the game and will make you fall for their tricks. They are incredibly resilient. This is how tech support scams work.

A strange popup appears. You call the number to speak with someone who claims they can help. Although the “rep” might try to convince you to give up remote access, they don’t attempt to sell you anything. They wait until you feel like you are talking to a legitimate IT company.

How to protect yourself?

Passphrases are a better alternative to passwords. You can use letters and characters in a phrase, as well as numbers and special characters. Another good option is to use a password manager to generate and keep track of difficult-to-crack passwords.

4) Your Baby Monitor and Smart TV can be points of entry

Your smart device is basically a computer, and it’s probably not very secure. Hackers can hack any device in your home that is connected to the Internet. This includes everything from your smart fridge to climate-control systems. Hackers were recently able to take over a baby monitor and shout at the baby. Experts also showed that hackers could hack into a smart TV’s camera to spy on you.

How to protect yourself?

Always change the default password when setting up smart devices. These devices are connected to your wireless router, so it is important to protect your Wi-Fi. You must keep up with firmware updates. Many devices will notify you when an update is available.

5) You can be hacked while surfing the web

While surfing, you may visit a website that looks harmless, but in the background, you could be redirected to malicious sites from where attacks are launched. In many cases, you or the website owner never realize that this is taking place. Most modern search engines maintain blacklists that list known malicious sites. However, these sites are constantly changing, and new sites keep popping up.

How to protect yourself?

Always ensure that you install all the available updates or use a browser with automatic updates like Firefox.

6) That must watch the video link may be a trap

A friend posted a video that says, “This is unbelievable. You have to watch it to believe”. Click to watch NOW. The hacker is playing with the human emotion of curiosity. As soon as you click this link, malware will be installed on your machine that will infect your machine and make your device share this video with all your friends.

How to protect yourself?

Type the video’s title into Google and see if it’s on YouTube. Someone may have already reported this scam.

7) Hackers take the word “Public” in Public-Wifi seriously

Even if your computer is connected to a legitimate public network, it could be a target to a man-in-the-middle attack that could allow hackers to spy on your session.

How to protect yourself?

It is best to avoid public Wi-Fi, particularly unsecured networks without passwords. Instead, set up your smartphone to act as a secure hotspot or subscribe to a VPN service. If you are connected to public Wi-Fi, it would be best to avoid making financial transactions or any sensitive communications.

8) They know that most people use the same password for multiple sites.

Studies have shown that more than half the people using the internet re-use the same password to access multiple websites. This makes it easy for hackers. Hackers only need to crack your password for one site, and they then have the keys to the kingdom.

How to protect yourself?

Two-factor authentication is a simple feature that requires you to enter more than your username and password in order to log on. To log in to a site, you may need to provide your password and a random code that is sent to your phone. This protection is offered by all major companies having an online presence.

9) Innocent typos you make are a goldmine for them

It is very common for hackers to purchase domain names that are very close to the domain names of legitimate businesses. For example, a hacker may purchase a domain called yourube.com or gnail.com.

In this example, a hacker is trying to take advantage of typos. A user trying to get to gmail.com can easily have a typo and type gnail.com. They then get redirected to a malicious website, and the rest, as they say, is history.

How to protect yourself?

Before you log in with your username and password, double-check the address of the site.

10) Hackers are master impersonators

A fake financial warning could be sent to you that appears to be sent by your bank or credit card company. Or you may receive a notification from a shopping website that you commonly shop from stating that you are their 100’th customer today and will be getting a prize.

How to protect yourself?

Most companies won’t ask for your account information outright. This type of scam can be easily detected by hovering over an address in the From field or hitting Reply All to look for misspellings and strange addresses. Call the company if you have doubts about the legitimacy of the email.

11) WEP encryption is an open invitation to hackers

Many older routers still use Wired Equivalent Privacy or WEP encryption. This is not very secure and can easily be cracked using a widely available software program that anybody can install.

How to protect yourself?

WPA2 (Wi-Fi Protected Access 2) is the preferred encryption type. If your router does not support WPA2, you should consider getting a new router. You should also change your default Wi-Fi password. Every hacker knows what the default passwords are for major routers.

12) Not every ATM machine is safe

Hackers use cleverly disguised skimmers, which steal card information. A hidden camera or thin skin placed over the keypad can also be used to capture your pin code.

How to protect yourself?

Always use ATMs placed inside banks. It’s very difficult for hackers to install skimmers on these devices. Also, before you use an ATM, inspect it carefully.

13) Hackers steal small amounts at a time.

Hackers use stolen credit cards to make small transactions. They are hoping that the victim does not realize that small amounts are missing.

How to protect yourself?

You should check your transactions online frequently, even daily. Report any suspicious charges to the credit card company or your bank immediately.

14) Hackers know most people leave their Wi-Fi always on.

While it is convenient to keep Wi-Fi on when you travel with your smartphone or tablet, your device will still try to connect to existing networks. It can be dangerous to connect to public Wi-Fi as attackers could identify these networks and create rogue networks that impersonate them.

How to protect yourself?

Make a habit of disconnecting your Wi-Fi whenever you are away from your home.

15) Not all Apps you download are safe

These apps can steal your confidential information, bypass your security settings, and subscribe you to premium services.

How to protect yourself?

Check the rating and the number of people who have downloaded the app before installing it. Hackers may fake positive ratings, but other posters can warn that it is a scam. Always download apps from the official market, such as Google Play or Apple’s App store.

16) Not all software upgrades are safe

Hackers can take advantage of your awareness to keep your software updated and send you a fake update that will install backdoor programs.

How to protect yourself?

You may get a popup message about an upgrade. Always verify the authenticity of a software upgrade by going to the actual company’s website that published the update.

17) Even big brands are not safe

Experts predict that big brands will continue to be hacked until they can better protect their data. Your personal data or identity can be sold on the dark web.

How to protect yourself?

When you shop online, don’t save any financial information. If you are the victim of an attack, contact your bank immediately and ask them to freeze your card and issue you a new card. Also, make sure to take advantage of any credit monitoring offered. Make it a habit to review statements regularly.

18) New does not always mean secure

It is comforting to hear that the security system has been upgraded or that there are new anti-virus programs. It’s challenging to determine the exact nature of security software bugs or glitches until it has been exposed to unforeseen problems. Hackers have the opportunity to attack your security system before you can fix it. You could be vulnerable if you have blind faith in your security system just because it’s new or updated.

How to protect yourself?

Stay vigilant. Never assume new is secure. Always follow best practices. 

19) Your old accounts are a security threat

How many unused old accounts do you have? Smart hackers can use them as a way to gain access.

Many of your accounts may have the same passwords. Hackers only need to gain access to one of these old accounts. They may have access to personal information in your old accounts that they can use to gain access to your current accounts.

How to protect yourself?

The first thing you need to do is identify the old accounts. Search through your email and look for words such as “login,” password, or “account.” and deactivate these accounts.

20) The photos you post can be a valuable source of information

You might forget what is behind your smile when you are focusing on taking a photo of your dog or smiling for a picture. Take a photo in your home office, and you might be able to see your computer screen. Who knows what secrets can be unearthed by zooming in on an image?

How to protect yourself?

Before uploading a photo to the Internet, zoom in so you can see everything. Next, make sure you lock your social media accounts. This will ensure that you are aware of who can view what you post.


The first line of defense against a cyber attack is knowledge. With knowledge and awareness, you can be better protected against attacks.

Hope you liked this article on 20 Cyber Security Secrets Hackers Don’t Want You to Know

Are you interested in kickstarting your career in Cybersecurity no matter your educational background or experience? Click Here to find out how.


Care to Share? Please spread the word :)