ST. LOUIS, Mo. - Fox 2 sat down with a local IT specialist to learn about ways you can protect your personal information after one of the station's employees was hacked. Scott Schaffer, Chief Information Security Officer with Blade Technologies in St. Louis, said the hackers will often play on your emotions and fears.
One of our Fox 2 employees received an email from a hacker who showed proof he had the victim's e-mail password. He claimed to have damaging information on the victim and said he would send it to all of the victim's email contacts if he did not pay the hacker $900.
"They are thieves, they are just thieves," said Schaffer.
He said he sees emails like this one all of the time. Some e-mails will claim they have footage of the individual viewing pornographic material.
Schaffer said the hacker doesn't actually have the damaging material, but that they got a hold of an old internet password from a breach that could have happened on one of the victim's accounts years ago.
The hacker obtains your information from a store you shop at that had a breach. Then, they use your e-mail and password for your online account and try it on other accounts of yours to see if they can get in. If you use the same password for everything you are at greater risk of being hacked.
If you receive an email from a hacker Shaffer said never respond and to delete it and change all of your passwords. He said you should contact the FBI Cyber Crimes Division.
He also recommends you use a password manager to track your passwords and he says to try out LastPass, Dashlane, and Keeper.