The Value of a Hacked PC

The Value of a Hacked PC

Why a Hacker wants ANY PC

The question we often hear is “I don’t bank online. I don’t store sensitive information on my machine. I only use it to check email. What could hackers possibly want with my PC?” We sit down with potential or existing clients all the time to explain the value of a hacked PC.

The graphics below, courtesy of krebsonsecurity.com, includes the malicious uses for hacked PCs, including hostage attacks — such as ransomware — and reputation hijacking on social networking sites.

Value of a Hacked PC

The next time someone wants to know why a hacker would target them, send them this diagram.

Hacking is about the Money, Challenge & Prestige

One of the ideas we want to get across with this image is that nearly every aspect of a hacked computer and a user’s online life can be and has been monetized. If it has value and can be resold, you can be sure there is a service or product offered in the cybercriminal underground to monetize it. There are no exceptions to date.

Hackers use simple tools to check multiple sites at once

Take a look the point-and-click tools pictured below, which are offered on several fraud forums by one enterprising young person. This guy makes and markets dozens of account checking tools that are used to test the validity and status of many popular online stores and services, including Amazon, American Express, eBay, Facebook, iTunes, PayPal and Skype, to name a few.

Account Checking Tools

Account checking tools sold on the cybercriminal underground by one vendor.

We use this hacked PC graphic to catch your attention and guide you toward some simple steps to keeping your network or machines from getting hacked. We have a suite of simple tools and tips that can help on this front, available here.