Social media, smartphones, and new forms of technology are just a few things people associate with millennials.
Growing up during the tech boom, this generation was introduced to the Internet and cell phones in their adolescent years, and is all too familiar with all the latest apps and tech products.
Millennials fall within the age group that spends the most time on apps each month, approximately 90.6 hours. Their generation also has the highest number of smartphone owners compared to other generations, with 86 percent of people surveyed by PEW Research Center aged 18 to 29 saying they own a smartphone.
Known for spending hours on their smartphones and laptops, individuals of this tech-savvy generation are still human and commit just as many cybersecurity mistakes as everyone else.
Read on to find out what common cybersecurity mistakes millennials make.
They don’t take the time to outweigh security costs
The latest security stumble many millennials have made was mindlessly signing away all of their private data in exchange to catch Pokemon on the Pokemon Go app.
Before an updated version of the popular app was released, the original version of the iOS app only gave new users the option to play if they agreed to give full access to all of their Google account information. This means that Google could potentially “see and modify nearly all information in your Google Account,” according to Google.
The updated version now only requires users to share their Google User ID and email address.
In spite of the original security flaw, over 65 million users signed up without questioning or regarding the lack of security approval from Google.
They Download Malware
Millions of people want to be a part of the Pokemon Go craze. The large and growing amount of players has resulted in server crashes and a delay in creating new accounts. For that reason alone, the app has only been released in certain countries.
People who live in countries where the game is not available don’t want to be left out of all the fun, and the need to see wild Pokemon in their neighborhood and local parks has tempted hundreds of people to download the app from sources outside of the Apple App Store and Google Play.
Unfortunately, hackers are already taking advantage of this opportunity by creating eerily similar versions of the game for Androids that are infested with a mix of spy malware.
Researchers for security companies like Proofpoint and Sophos have discovered a version of the Pokémon Go program that can give an attacker full control over a victim’s phone.
This shows that many millennials are capable of being outsmarted and fall for the “too good to be true” hacking trick, which could come in the form of an email that says you won a thousand dollars to downloading an off limits app.
They Choose Weak Passwords
In some cases, passwords are the only barrier between a stranger and someone’s personal information. It’s common knowledge that the more difficult one’s password is, the more secure their information is. It’s also common knowledge to not reuse a password for multiple accounts.
Yet nearly 3 out of 4 consumers reuse easy-to-guess passwords. Considering that 75 percent of millennials have social media accounts in addition to their online bank accounts and app accounts, they are no exception.
Millennial social media king, Mark Zuckerberg, showed the world that earlier this June when his Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest accounts were hacked, after a group of hackers found his LinkedIn password on a leaked database. What was the famous password? “dadada”.
While millennials may know what’s the next hottest app or tech invention, they’re not immune to experiencing a privacy breach and still need to follow the basic rules of cybersecurity.