OK – maybe you’re not famous and don’t think you’re a target for hackers, but neither did the widows of soldiers who have been killed in Afghanistan or the parents of Milly Dowler and other missing children. You never know when you might come under scrutiny.
If you’ve got any kind of remote access to your phone voicemail, whether on your mobile or on your office (or home) answering machine, you may be making it easy for hackers to access your messages.
How? Because you’re using a pin code that is far from idiot proof! Guessing pin codes for experts is easy, they start with the ones most of us use, often through laziness.
0000 – default setting for many answering machines – have you bothered to change yours?
1111 – nearly as obvious (as is 5555 and, to a lesser, extent 2222)! Don’t use all the same numbers. In fact, it’s wise not to use repeat numbers at all.
1234 – hackers try this one very early on. 1212 is fairly obvious too.
2580 – straight down the middle set of keys – and, of course, the reverse – 0852.
1998 – the most popular year, but other years between 1990 and 2000 are also popular. Your date of birth is far too easy to spot, the hackers will be working on a combination of your birthdate and year early in their efforts to gain access.
5683 – spells ‘Love’, and is another popular choice.
There are 10,000 possible combinations for a 4 figure code – make sure yours is sufficiently random for a hacker to have to work really hard to gain access to your messages.