How to Prevent Photos From Getting Hacked

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As we reported earlier, a massive wave of hacks has exposed nude pics of some of the most beautiful women in Hollywood. Worried about the saucy selfies on your smartphone going public? Here are some guidelines for protecting your secret pics from hackers.

1. Change Your Password Regularly

Check out the video above from Sophos to get some tips on creating stronger passwords, which is a must for keeping your accounts safe from hackers.

As with any online service, using a secure password is the first step towards keeping hackers out of your phone. In the case of these recent celeb nude pic hacks, the hackers were able to access personal data via a vulnerability in Find My iPhone. Frequently changing device pass codes and account passwords can help to protect you. Make sure the password is long, sophisticated, and full of numbers or special characters. And obviously, using the same password across different accounts is a security risk.

2. Watch Out for Wi-Fi Backups of Your Photos

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The Daily Mail notes that iCloud’s My Photo Stream feature has some inherent features that make it easier for hackers to access photos:

“Be aware that deleting a photo from a device does not mean it has been deleted from your online storage account. The photos may also appear in photo streams on other devices, and any phone or tablet that is synced with that iCloud account. This means you should delete photos from all of these areas if you want to get rid of them permanently.”

Whether you use an iPhone, Android phone, Windows phone, BlackBerry, or some other mobile device, you should make sure you fully understand how your photos are backed up in the cloud. Consult your phone’s user manual (or your cloud service’s FAQ) to figure out the best way to turn off Wi-Fi backup features that might create additional copies of your pics.

3. Enable 2-Factor Authentication

Check out the video above for tips on making your iPhone harder to hack, including advice about two-factor authentication.

If you’re unfamiliar with this form of secure login, a two-factor authentication system works by forcing you to present two forms of credentials. Rather than just using your password to confirm your identity, you use two forms of identity confirmation.

For example, one common way that two-factor authentication works is by providing something that only you know (like a password) with someone only you have in your possession (such as a phone or USB token). Lifehacker has a great guide to services and sites where you should definitely have two-factor authentication enabled.

4. Don’t Take Digital Photos

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Hey, if you’re gonna run your saucy selfies through Instagram anyway, you might as well go full-on retro and take actual photographs. A hacker can’t steal photos that aren’t kept on your phone, on your computer, or in the cloud.

If you absolutely must go digital with your sexy pics, have a dedicated digital camera just for taking selfies. Keep your photos on a memory card, and only review the images on a computer that is not connected to the Internet.

Here’s the bottom line for protecting images of your body: don’t take any pictures of yourself that you would be upset about seeing online. The average person might not be as appealing a target as a sexy celeb, but that doesn’t mean normal folks (and their nude pics) can’t be targeted by hackers. If you don’t take naked pics of yourself, then there’s nothing for a nudie-obsessed hacker to steal…and nothing for you to be embarrassed about.