The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

SMU professor Susanne Scholz in the West Bank in 2018.
SMU professor to return to campus after being trapped in Gaza for 12 years
Sara Hummadi, Video Editor • May 18, 2024

How to Stop Hackers in Their Tracks in 4 Steps


Did you know that more than 2.8 billion users had their accounts hacked in 2018?

Not only does this cause frustration and an invasion of privacy. When a banking site is involved, you can also end up with financial issues that largely impact your life.

So, what can you do to prevent hacking? The easiest steps you can take involve tightening the security on your accounts and devices as well as avoiding falling for common scams on the web.

Keep reading to learn how to stop hackers with four handy tips.

1. Keep Your Devices Updated

Do you find installing updates on your devices annoying? If so, you may ignore them and leave your phone, computer, and other devices open to hackers.

Updates for operating systems, apps, and firmware often fix security holes that can allow a hacker to gain access or steal your information. So, look for and install updates often. Even better, set your devices to automatically update.

2. Use Passwords Properly

Do you use passwords that are easy to guess or reuse the same ones across multiple places? Both practices make it easy for a hacker to get into your account or even post your account credentials on the dark web.

Use complex passwords with a mix of different types of symbols, numbers, and characters. You can always use a password manager if you worry you’ll forget your passwords. Also, use a unique password on each site and never share it with anybody.

3. Enable Extra Security for Your Accounts

Having a strong, unique password helps secure your accounts a lot, but that’s usually not enough. You’ll also want to enable two-factor authentication, especially for important accounts like your email, banking, and social media.

Often, this means an extra step where you enter a code sent to your phone or an email account. Sites and apps can have their own measures like security questions, code generator apps, or confirmation from an approved device. So, check out which options exist for your accounts and devices.

4. Don’t Become a Phishing Victim

One of the most common ways hackers can get into your accounts is by getting you to respond to a phishing scam. This often involves receiving an email that looks just like one from your email provider, bank, or other trusted website.

The email usually has a link that directs you to log in and often fix a problem or confirm information. The problem is that these emails come from hackers who use the form to steal your username and password.

To stay safe, look at such emails with suspicion and don’t click the links within them. Instead, go directly to your account website in your browser to log in. You can also reach out to the site’s support to confirm any problems an email claims your account has.

Now You Know How to Stop Hackers

There’s no guarantee you’ll never become a victim of a hack. But knowing how to stop hackers with these common tips will go a long way toward improving your digital security.

Along with using these tips, it’s worth checking out the security section of any app, website, or device you use. There’s a good chance there are extra settings you can use to improve your safety.

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