When we surf the net we can run into many security problems that compromise our equipment. This is something that affects desktop and mobile devices, as well as any type of operating system. Luckily we can make use of many security tools that protect us. However, hackers are constantly looking for ways to hone their attack techniques and be able to compromise systems. In this article we are going to explain what clipboard hijacking is and, most importantly, what we can do to protect ourselves.
What is clipboard hijacking
As we have indicated there are many types of malware that can compromise our systems. Some are designed to steal information, others to cause a malfunction or even encrypt our files. When we talk about the malware that is capable of hijacking the clipboard, we are referring to malicious software that is designed to steal or modify the information that we have copied.
This is something that can affect both desktop and mobile devices. Let’s say that we are going to enter an account and we have copied bank details, for example. If our system has been infected by this type of malware, it could steal the information that we have copied.
We could put passwords, personal data or any information that we copy on the clipboard at risk. This logically affects our security and privacy. It could cause possible intruders to enter our accounts or steal sensitive data.
But not only can they steal what we have copied, but they could also modify that information . Let’s say we are going to make a bank transfer and have copied the address. A malware designed to do this could detect it and change that account to one that is controlled by hackers.
There are some types of malware that hijack the clipboard that focus on something specific. For example, we have seen malware of this type responsible for modifying the addresses of cryptocurrency wallets . In this way, when a user has copied the address of a bitcoin account, for example, that malware modifies it and when pasting it shows the one that belongs to the attacker. So when making the payment it does not go to the correct recipient.
How to avoid becoming a victim of clipboard hijacking
As it usually happens with all kinds of malware and security problems that may exist, we have at our disposal a series of tools and functions that can help us avoid problems. We will therefore give some advice for this, in order to avoid problems that may compromise our security and privacy.
The first thing is going to be having a good antivirus . This can keep our systems safe from possible malware. But beyond that we can also make use of very varied security tools. There are browser extensions that can help us increase privacy. Also firewall and other tools for the same purpose.
It is also very important to always have the latest versions installed . Sometimes this type of malware enters our systems through security breaches. We need to have the latest available patches and updates installed. This is something that we must apply regardless of the type of device or operating system that we are using.
Also keep in mind the importance of downloading programs from official and reliable sources . A major cause of malware entry is downloading software from third-party sites. This could cause us to be installing software that has been maliciously modified and may contain malware capable of hijacking the clipboard.
But without a doubt the most important thing to avoid clipboard hijacking is common sense . Many types of malware will require some form of user interaction. For example downloading some type of malicious file that we have received by mail or accessing a dangerous link.
In short, the hijacking of the clipboard is one of the many threats that we can find when browsing the Internet. Luckily we can take into account a series of tips that we have been giving to avoid these problems.