Cyber security is not just the latest catch phrase, it will always be an issue and here's why.
It can be for profit, identity theft, gaining access to systems and devices for Command and Control (C2) or whatever the reason, our personal details especially in our online accounts are always under threat and under fire. The fact remains that irrespective if its that lone wolf hacker, crime syndicates or nation state funded attacks, all our personal data whether online or not, are of value and highly sort after.
What is HIBP?
Have I Been Pwned (HIBP) or as per the website, ;--have i been pwned is a web service designed to ascertain whether your email address is in a data set of known and verified breached data. This web service is free to use by everyone and pushed out by the award winning Australian technologist, Troy Hunt.
Unfortunately due to the nature of the Internet, data breaches seem to be a daily occurrence and that's simply because harvesting your and my personal data is big business.
HIBP has, as of this post, a list of 287 websites that have been breached and 5,071,465,949 (yes, that is over 5 billion!) compromised accounts listed. For that reason alone, cyber security for each and everyone of us must be number 1 on our online agenda. So what can we do?
In an effort to assist us with cyber security, we can check to see if we have a compromised account. To do this easily Troy has created HIBP. Using this service we can check any of our email addresses against a data set of known compromised accounts. As Troy works closely in the field of data security he updates HIBP as soon as breached data becomes available.
Of note and merit, Troy uses his security expertise and contacts within the industry to verify each and every breach that comes to his attention and no, that doesn't mean testing breached accounts with the corresponding password. That would go against industry ethics and standards and could very well lead to criminal charges both here and overseas. You can read more about his work on his blog.
Using HIBP we can take immediate action to mitigate and secure our compromised accounts. That usually starts with changing your password. It can't be emphasised strongly enough that using strong passwords and changing these regularly is a must and should be par of the course in our everyday online presence.
Click the HIBP link to check your email address now.
On behalf of Broken Hill Hobbies and Electronics I can't thank Troy enough for implementing this service and making it freely available for all of us to use. Well done mate!
Alwyn Bressanelli - Technical Services Manager.