Hey! This week I’m going to recommend one of the most intriguing podcasts I’ve ever heard before! Now that our lives literally revolve around our various smart (and sometimes not so smart) devices, thus the topic of hacking and our online vulnerability is a timely topic. For me personally, I have an interest in the world of hacking, not because I want to hack anyone, but I’m just intrigued by guys & gals who have the ability to play their fingers at lightning speed over their keyboards like pianists, typing out commands and keystrokes, working their way into other people’s systems. It’s both frightening and intriguing at the same time, and now there is a podcast which reveals this shadowy enclave of our society!
‘Hackable?’ is a podcast brought to us by McAfee®, the anti-virus company – the branded podcast is award-winning and is hosted by famed Canadian media personality Geoff Siskind. At the time of writing this post, Hackable? has wrapped up their 3rd season of episodes, so there are 24 episodes you can binge listen to, and my fingers are crossed that a 4th season is coming soon!
The podcast is very well produced, adopting a structure to each episode which makes it both predictable and entertaining (the 30 min eps just breeze by).
Each episode opens with a scripted re-enactment from a movie or TV scene depicting human interaction with technology – the visuals are described in much detail by our host (piquing our interest in what is to come). This is all before the show’s intro jingle, introducing the podcast and our greeting from our host Geoff Siskind, where he credits where the clip was taken from and what hack he has installed for us this week!
If Geoff is seemingly the foolhardy one, Bruce Snell, (cyber-security expert from McAfee) is the rational one, whom Geoff speaks with at the top of each episode to gain his expert opinion on the said area to be hacked. The show is predictable, as Bruce warns Geoff of the dangers, before Geoff outlines what he has already set in motion to expose himself to a hack (d’oh), revealing how easy it is and how vulnerable we all are if we’re the target for hackers.
In the more recent episodes, the show has introduced an interlude segment where Producer Pedro interviews a victim of said hack, before we cross back to Geoff where he has inevitably linked up with a Hacker or two, and has surrendered his own device for the hackers to invade his privacy, all in the name of science and our entertainment! No, no it’s very educational as well.
After the hackers prove that they can take control over Geoff’s device (it can easily be ours), Geoff re-connects with Bruce Snell, where Bruce advises Geoff and the listener on how we can protect ourselves from a similar attack. And like always, Geoff vows to be safer online, until the next episode where he once again volunteers his device or himself to another hack.
The hacks which have stayed with me have been: how easily your personal information on your laptop can be accessed if your device falls into the wrong hands, even if your laptop is password protected! How any digital image floating around the Internet has GPS coordinates embedded in the image’s code, that with the know-how and the right web-site, anyone can pin-point where that picture was taken and potentially find out where you live! How a keyless car fob works, and how easy it is to mimic that frequency so with the right hardware someone can steal your car without your key, like as easy as stealing candy from a baby! And how some smart devices around our home are literally inviting strangers right into our dwelling places, allowing God-knows-who to see and hear us in our most private setting, and take control over devices around our home! All very very scary!
So if this has piqued your interest, and you’re curious to hear how all these hacks are possible, and how to protect yourself (for those whom I’ve just made paranoid), just click HERE! And you can start listening immediately to how, and how you can protect yourself from being a victim of hackers. Enjoy!