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How can you tell if your computer has been hacked? There are many ways of finding out if your computer is hacked or not. Below are listed a few of them:

  1. Frequently occurring popups: This is one of the most common cases that people face. One might start seeing random popups in their web browser while browsing websites that don’t usually spam them with popups. This is a simple giveaway of your computer being hacked.

  2. Changing of online passwords: When you find out that one of your online passwords has suddenly changed, you have perhaps fallen prey to a phishing email. Hackers send authentic-looking emails from banks, companies, etc which ask users to change their passwords by clicking on a link in the email. The hacker then gets your personal information and changes your password to lock you out of your account

  3. Fake emails sent from your account: This is a common method for spreading worms to different computers. When a virus compromises your email, it sends malicious emails to all your contacts. This is not a very dangerous situation, as it doesn’t always mean that your system has been hacked. However, if your contacts see your name as well as your email address, your system has probably been compromised.

  4. Your antivirus or anti-malware shuts down and can’t be re-enabled: There are lots of malware types that disable your anti-malware and stop Task Manager from opening correctly when you try to do so. This is a sure sign that your system has been compromised.

  5. Unknown software installed: Many a time you find software on your system that you did not install manually. This is usually done by worms or malware that give the outlook of legitimate software. They always come along with software that you install manually, with an added message saying that some other software will be installed on your system.

What can you do if your computer has been hacked? You can do the following:

  • Reset your passwords if you find that your computer has been hacked.

  • Run a complete antivirus scan of your system. Although this does not guarantee that sophisticated virus programs will be nullified, it can work fine for simple virus and malware programs.

  • Open the action center in your control panel and remove/uninstall all software that does not have a legitimate vendor as their provider.

  • Restore your system to a known safe state.

  • Take steps to encrypt your online data and adjust your behaviour online

    • Secure browsing practices

    • Secure communication online

    • Online and hardware encryption

    • Password management 

    • Clearing your cookies and staying away from web trackers

    • Update your device, especially if any security updates are available

Apart from watching out for these signs, you should never click on links from unknown websites or services as they are often email scams designed to gain access to your system. If you have any questions or suspect your computer has been hacked, contact BrickHost today.