Secure your Online Accounts by using Two-Factor Authentication & Authy

 

It has been revealed, a number of celebrities and journalists Twitter accounts were hacked. On this occasion, not for malicious reasons, but to show that the Twitter accounts were vulnerable. An online hacking security agency “hijacked” multiple Twitter accounts in an effort to make a point regarding Twitters online security issues.

 

A message stated, “This account has been temporarily hijacked by Insinia Security,” Mike Godfrey, the CEO of Insinia Security, explained, “Insinia have warned for years that using text messaging for authentication, interaction or security is totally unacceptable and leaves people vulnerable to attack”.

 

Mobile Number Spoofing

The ease at which mobile numbers are spoofed, should come as a warning to people using a text message as a means to authenticate their online accounts. By spoofing the target number, it enables an attacker to send an authentication message from the platform to another device. This allows access to the account. Passwords and details can be altered once the account has been accessed, which can prevent the owner of the account from accessing it.

 

The first line of defence is always going to be a strong password. Two Factor Authentication adds an extra layer of security, to protect your account. However, the use of a text message to send codes for an online account to a mobile device, can be a vulnerability. This is why we recommend using Authy.

 

 

Mobile Authenticator Code Generator

One way to protect the account from an attack, such as this is to use a Mobile Authenticator Code Generator such as Authy. The App is free and really easy to use. You can download it directly from the Google Play Store or the App Store. Once installed log follow this guide for some of the more popular Platforms. Authy has an extensive list of guides on its homepage, which you can find here.

 

 

 

 

Facebook

Log in to your account

  1. Go to your Security and Login Settings by clicking  tab in the top-right corner of Facebook
  2. Go to Settings > Security and Login.
  3. Scroll down to and select Use two-factor authentication and then click Edit.
  4. Choose the authentication method you want to add and follow the on-screen instructions.
  5. Click Enable once you’ve selected and turned on an authentication method.

There are several two-factor authentication methods you can use with your Facebook account when logging in from an unrecognized computer or mobile device. To begin, choose either:

 

 

 

We recommend that you use a Third Party Authentication App like Authy

To connect the account

  • Select third-party authentication app.
  • A QR code will appear on the screen
  • Open Authy and select the + to add a new account
  • Point the camera at the QR code to connect the account
  • Facebook asks for an authentication code. Authy generates a new code. This code will only be valid for 30 Second and changes every 30 seconds.
  • That’s it your set up and ready to go.

 

 

Twitter

  • Log in to you account
  • Go to your profile
  • Select Account then Review your Log in Verification Methods
  • Select Mobile Security App
  • A QR code will appear on the screen
  • Open Authy and select the + to add a new account
  • Point the camera at the QR code to connect the account
  • Twitter will now ask for an authentication code which will be generated by Authy. This code will only be valid for 30 Second and changes every 30 seconds.
  • Once you enter the code, that’s it your set up and ready to go.

 

 

Gmail

  • Log in to your account
  • Select Security > Two Factor Authentication
  • Then Select Enable Two Factor Authentication
  • Now Select Authenticator App Set Up
  • A QR code will appear on the screen
  • Open Authy and select the + to add a new account
  • Point the camera at the QR code to connect the account

Gmail asks for an authentication code. Authy will generate a new code which will change every 30 seconds. Enter the code and that’s it. A new code is required in from Authy before you can access the account.

 

These are only a few of the Guides Available. Be sure to check them out and start securing your accounts today.

 

Team @COTDAge

 

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Parental Controls

Google’s Family Link App for IOS and Android

 

Google Family Link

 

Parental controls are essential. The days of handing a child an unrestricted, unsupervised or unmonitored device, are well and truly in the past. We have literally met thousands of young children who have, and still are, being negatively impacted by their exposure to unsuitable content online. While devices have been designed for children to use, they have not been supplied with the necessary safety features, pre-installed, to protect children. These devices are no more toys, then they are babysitters. Left unrestricted in the hands of a child, content which has the potential to cause serious long-term psychological harm, is always only a click away.

Continue reading “Google’s Family Link App for IOS and Android”

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A Christmas Message from @COTDAge


A Christmas Message

Since founding Children of the Digital Age, a company with the sole purpose of protecting children online. I have dedicated a very large piece of myself, to identifing the many dangers faced by children and adults in an online enviornment. Then developing ways to protect against it, and bringing this knowledge to adults, parents and children all over the country.

Continue reading “A Christmas Message from @COTDAge”

Blog

WhatsApp identified as a source of Cyberbullying. Parents can monitor their children’s accounts

How to link WhatsApp Mobile to WhatsApp PC
How to link WhatsApp Mobile to WhatsApp PC

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Cyberbullying and WhatsApp

It should come as no suprise, that WhatsApp is a platfrom people use to target and cyberbully others. Internet Matters, a UK based online child safety organisation, surveyed 2000 parents. The survey revealed, 8 out of every 10 parents expressed concern regarding closed messaging groups. Some use Group Chats to share hurtful images, or content about others. Parent can see what children post on WhatsApp by likning a mobile account to WhatsApp PC. This can be enough to prevent Cyberbullying.

Continue reading “WhatsApp identified as a source of Cyberbullying. Parents can monitor their children’s accounts”

Blog

What happens when beauty is no longer in the eye of the beholder ?

beauty is no longer in the eye of the beholder

A recent Tweet by Irish Cyberpsychologist, Dr. Mary Aiken caught our attention. For some time now, Dr Aiken has been highlighting how technology has infiltrated our lives and impacted us on a psychological level, right down to an individual’s level of self-perception. AI or Artificial Intelligence has many different levels. It is used in some of popular Apps, to digitally improve or alter images, before it shared online with others. There is a negative emotional and psychological side to this, many adults may have not considered or be aware of which is why it is the topic of this weeks #COTDAge blog.

 

The concept of beauty is a very transient perception. One which is highly open to influence and manipulation, through mediums of TV, Movies and Magazines. The shoulder pads of the 80’s and big hairstyles did not survive the 90’s, as trends frequently come and go. Image manipulation has been around for a long time. Many top fashion magazines have been caught over the years, having featured airbrushed celebrities on their covers, to make them look thinner. The difference now however, is that the perception of what we consider as beautiful, is no longer naturally realistic or achievable. How can anyone possibly measure up against celebrities, who are not only altering their physical appearance through surgery, but also using very accessible technology to then alter their image even further in the persuit of perfection?

 

There has been a lot of criticism lately of the Apple’s iPhone XS, for over smoothing selfie photos. Some users complained the images were being over manipulated, producing an airbrushed version of the picture. These type of App are generally referred to as a ‘Beautification Apps’. There are countless Apps available, which are designed specifically to alter an image, by removing any unwanted features such as skin blemishes, or acne. One filter App promoted by Kyle Jenner enables users add ‘Beauty Filters’ to their Instagram images. It widens the user’s eyes, softens the skin, and creates plump fuller lips. If you wish you can even add length to eyelashes. It essentially enables the user, to look just like someone who has had surgery so extensive, she no longer even looks like herself.

 

We often ask children, are they the creator of their own destiny, when they create their online persona? Inevitably, almost all say yes. We try to educate both teens and parents about the how Apps work and their use of Gamification. Describing the process which is actually controlling and directing the user on popular Apps like Snapchat can leave audiences stunned. Gamification is used on many popular Apps that are used by children. It is designed to encourage user interaction by turning the App in to a game, often without the user even realising.

 

snapchat trophies

The Apps encourage frequent use through notifications and streaks, a little competition among Friends or Followers. The Apps use rewards like Emoji Trophies for completing certain tasks, such as take 1000 snaps using your front facing camera. As an adult reading this, if we were to offer you an Emoji and ask you to go and take a thousand pictures of yourself, undoubtedly you would say “ Are you ****ing kidding me or what?”. Yet our kids are happily doing this, all the while oblivious to the level of manipulation actually taking place.

 

If a child has taken one thousand pictures of themselves and over time been introduced to adding a variety of filters to alter their image in order to improve it, will the child still be satisfied with themselves when looking at an unfiltered normal regular photo. over time will the App influence their perception to the extent of now needing to add a Beauty Filter to their image, perhaps as a result of a preference now for wider eyes, smoother skin or fuller lips? Even the suggestion that a child or teen needs to make use a Beauty Filter, immediately gives the suggestion that there is something wrong with their image.

 

Adults have not grown up with this technology, we can’t even imagine what it is like to live in a world, where you are consistantly encouraged to alter your own image in order to make it conform to the current perception of beauty. What gives us further cause for concern, is the way Apps then encourage users to share their altered image of themselves with others. Now the user is seeking validation and feedback of an online world, where the harsh and frequent horrific judgement and comments can cause devastation to an individual’s self-esteem and concept of self-worth.

 

The number of young girls and boys reporting dissatisfaction with their very perception of themselves continues to increase, along with the numbers suffering from self-esteem issues, eating disorders, body dysmorphia, self-harm and eating disorders. The figures being reported are higher than they have ever been before. Beauty Apps, and Apps which are using psychology and gamification to condition a user to habitually alter and share their own image, will eventually create an altered idea of what the perception of beauty is.

 

Incredibly, when you listen to those who make millions and profit from selling their image as the one to aspire to, the Jenner/Kardashian media monster machine, even these people, who at this point must be made of more plastic than Joan Rivers, say they are not happy with their image. They are still complain constantly about what they are not happy with about themselves to a very vulnerable audience. Children are learning the negative lesson of the importance of astetics rather than ability, tallent or skill.

 

No child, male or female, can ever aspire to the perception of beauty held by people who no longer even look like themselves, or images which have been altered to unrealistic proportions. Children are unique, that is where their beauty lies, in their uniqueness. Who wants to live in a world with 3.2 billion internet users, who all look like Kardashian or Jenner replicates. For parents it is really important to pay attention to the image your child creates of themselves online. Be mindful of the harm caused to a child, who becomes unhappy with their own perception of their identity. All the filters and AI in the world will never improve who a person is on the inside, however it does have very powerful ability to destroy them.

 

 

Team @COTDAge