What if your best friend struck up a conversation with the person you trust least in this world? Say a politician, a crook, thief, or a hacker? What if they started talking about all those “in the vault” friend-to-friend conversations you just needed to get off your chest and thought no one would ever hear about? What a nightmare for most of us. But it gets worse.
What if that untrustworthy person got access to your credit report, social security number, income and employment history, private photos and social media? Finally, what if you made some mistakes? Maybe you had to file for a bankruptcy, got a DUI, saw a doctor for depression, a therapist for marriage counseling, or maybe you made a bad choice and signed up on a popular website like Ashley Madison where married people look to have an affair?
Could it get any worse? Yes. Now you have a great job, your public image is one of a winner, a wonderful marriage and family – your future is exciting and full of promise. Then it happens.
It’s just a regular Monday when you receive an email or phone call from someone you don’t know and can’t track down, and they seem to know all of your secrets. It starts out friendly:
“Hey I noticed you had some problems a while ago and I think we can help each other out. I need credentials to access your computer network, or I need to know what your company is working on right now and when they plan to release it… or can you email me a copy of your customer list, salary packages, corporate email and phone numbers, or maybe your patent designs?”
“I only need this one favor and if you can help me out, I can send you a copy of all your private data and make sure it’s permanently deleted so no one else can ever use it against you again. If you can’t well, I don’t have much choice, my boss says either get his help or take him down. Career, marriage, credit, and reputation – I’ll have to ruin your life and everything you’ve worked so hard for. I just did this to a person last month and honestly, I feel bad. He lost everything in about 2 weeks. His job, wife, reputation, and he was even fired as a coach for his sons’ baseball team. So, let’s work together and no one will ever know what happened.”
That scenario will play out for years to come and every one of the 21.5 million affected by the OPM data breach who applied for security clearance, whether they got it or not, will be a target of sophisticated cyber criminals working for nation states like China and Russia that want something you have or know.
Government workers, government contractors, even vendors to companies – that supply companies – that supply the government – are targets. And credit and identity monitoring won’t do a thing to stop it.
Some of our brightest and best talent just became a serious security risk. Their professional lives can never be the same if they have but one secret, one little lie, that they don’t want someone else to know.
If you have been involved in a data breach of any kind, you can find all the resources and links to repair and reclaim your credit and identity at https://www.prilock.com/identitytheftrepair.php.
If you suspect someone is trying to pressure you to do something wrong, contact your security point of contact, your Facilities Security Officer (FSO), your local police, or FBI as soon as possible. For more information on immediate steps you can take to further secure your devices, privacy, and personal data, check out the online security awareness training at www.prilock.com. It’s 100% guaranteed to make you safer.