My computer is being hacked what do I do?

First lets step back and ask ourselves a few questions!!!

What is a "HACKER"?

A slang term for a computer enthusiast, i.e., a person who enjoys learning programming languages and computer systems and can often be considered an expert on the subject(s). Among professional programmers, depending on how it used, the term can be either complimentary or derogatory, although it is developing an increasingly derogatory connotation. The pejorative sense of hacker is becoming more prominent largely because the popular press has coopted the term to refer to individuals who gain unauthorized access to computer systems for the purpose of stealing and corrupting data. Hackers, themselves, maintain that the proper term for such individuals is cracker.

Ok .. so then What is a "CRACKER"?

(1) To break into a computer system. The term was coined in the mid-80s by hackers who wanted to differentiate themselves from individuals whose sole purpose is to sneak through security systems. Whereas crackers sole aim is to break into secure systems, hackers are more interested in gaining knowledge about computer systems and possibly using this knowledge for playful pranks. Although hackers still argue that there's a big difference between what they do and what crackers do, the mass media has failed to understand the distinction, so the two terms -- hack and crack -- are often used interchangeably.
(2) To copy commercial software illegally by breaking (cracking) the various copy-protection and registration techniques being used.

How did I reach the conclusion that I am being "Hacked"??

Because the computer is acting funny!

Well Computers do act funny from time to time and it can be a number of issues that are causing the problems your having .. anything from a bad mother board to a bad piece of software to a virus or worm. Even your cat can be the reason. Files can come up missing, the computer can lock and freeze, Icons can move around, this does not mean you have a "Hacker " getting into your system! So you may want to rule out some other issues ..

Start by running your UPDATED antivirus program do a full scan! do you have the same issues in "safe mode"? If yes then it can mean you have a hardware problem not a "Hacker". If the issues are not present in safe mode then you can always shut down the start up group in MSCONFIG and reboot to windows check a couple of items back on and see if the issue is still there. If not continue turning the startup items on. If the issue comes back after turning one on .. you may want to uninstall or reinstall that program is it associated too!

Did the cat get behind the machine and knock lose a wire is everything tightly connected?

Did you change something? Moving a fluorescent light near the monitor can cause the monitor to show strange colors, blur and distort the picture.

Because someone told me they are hacking me!!

Now why would a "Hacker" tell you they are hacking you??

Remember you can be what all you want to be on the internet! In most cases a true hacker is NOT going to tell you they are Hacking you! It would defeat the purpose of Hacking! or Cracking!

Do you have anything on the system that is worth the effort and time of a "Hacker" ??

Since I frequent Yahoo chat I am going to reference a few scenarios

Your in a chat room and some one PM's you and tells you they are hacking you! Well .. they probably are not!

They are able to boot you, make your computer lock and freeze! Well that is not hacking! They are flooding the Private message with so many commands and text yahoo can't keep up and thus knocking you off chat .. even to the point of knocking your computer off line!  If your running the yahoo program and get knocked off to a point of shutting down the computer by using the power button the yahoo program is open to corruption and will need to be reinstalled! It has nothing to do with someone "hacking" you! The so called "Hacker" is using a program to do this .. and in most cases he did not design it himself he stole it from someone, thus showing he has little intelligence to HACK in the first place!

Do you realize when using chat programs or messenger programs and you have a fire wall, you give the firewall permission to allow that program to access you .. your can be tracked and traced then and through a Private message someone using, for instance Neo trace can easily track you when you are on a one on one conversation with this person. So they can gain some info about you. But then they have to go through your ISP, which most wannabe hackers can not do!

So to protect your self .. do not go into a private conversation with someone you do not know! Do not accept files from people you do not know, not even a picture! Do not click on web links of people you don't know! Trojans are what they say they are .. as in the story of Helen of Troy the Trojans made a  wooden horse as a gift and hid soldiers inside the gift!

When your were growing up I am sure your mother told you DO not take rides from strangers! Chatting in Private is the same thing!

Get a firewall.

Zone alarm has a decent free fire wall that should protect you from the average practicing "cracker"

If your in a conversation with someone that admits to Hacking you... ignore him. Nothing is more defeating to a wannabe then to not get the attention they seek. With out a reaction then there will be no more action. The more reactions you give the more thrill they get the more they continue.

You can set most messaging programs to ignore people not on your friends list. The help file for the program you are using should tell you how too!

This is where I should mention STALKING,

Stalking someone on the internet is a crime! Report it to the police!

If this person is stalking you the police can actually get your ISP, Yahoo, MSN and so on to cooperate with them in the investigation and end the stalking!

Did you make your self a subject of this attack? Did you argue with someone that know a few tricks more then you? Probably not, but if you did it might be something to consider next time you decide to argue with someone you don't know!


If you are truly being "Hacked" PULL the plug ..

Unplug the computer from the internet connection .. with no connection .. there is no way into your system! Now how simple is that?

Trojans are used as a hacking tool. with them they can put a back door Trojan on your system and then yes they can use it to get in your computer. So get a Trojan scanner and run it update it and run it often .. If you are the kind of person that goes on line and clicks on things before thinking first, it might be wise to run it as often as twice a week.


Microsoft  has a site about protecting your PC.

There are several sites that explain internet securities, Norton, McAfee and Zone Alarm are also good sites.