- Internet & the Web
What to Do if Yahoo Email Has Been Hacked
What is Email Hacking?
Email Hacking is when someone "illegally" enters your email account. "Illegally Entering" means the individual went into your email without seeking your permission. There's many reasons someone may want to hack into your email account, including:
1. Looking for personal data such as financial records
2. Looking for evidence of cheating or other forms of wrong-doing
3. Simply to spend spam. This is the most popular reason for "hacking". With one simple breakin, a hacker can "export" a list of all of your contacts, then send them spam. Even if you do not have a "Contact List", the hacker can near-instantly create a list of everything in your email that contains the "@" symbol.
Has Your Email Been Hacked? REBOUND EMAILS
Anyone can fasly impersonate your email address and send out emails that appear to be from you WITHOUT actually breaking into your email account. This is why there are so many online "phishing" scams that make people believe it is their bank, credit card or other service contacting them when in reality it is someone trying to illegally obtain credit card information, bank account information or passwords.
The dead give-a-way to if your email has been hacked with the intention of spamming is that you will have an inbox filled with "rebound" emails:
Hacked Email Rebounds Photo
As you can see from the photo above, all of these messages were "rebounds" because they were former Craigslist communications and the temporary Craigslist email is now invalid, so when the Hacker sent spam to them, they "rebounded" since the email no longer exists.
These "rebounds" are a sure sign that someone has indeed been IN your email account.
Has Your Email Been Hacked: CONFUSION FROM CONTACTS
If you are lucky, you will also have friends, business associates and/or family members contact you about the "odd" email you sent them:
Of course you did not send out these emails and you likely feel embarrassed and confused as well.
How to Check Your Email Log-in Log
If you feel you may have been hacked and you are using Yahoo, you want to immediately go to your account name, located in the upper right hand corner of the screen. If you mouse-over (hover) on it, a drop down menu will appear. Click on "ACCOUNT INFO"
Once on ACCOUNT INFO, scroll down to the second section called "Sign-In and Security". In this section you will see a link titled "View Recent Signin Activity" (as of March 2013 it is the second link from the bottom of this section)
Once you are on this page you will be able to view each "sign in" / "log in" to your account; this includes the location of the user (and IP address)
As you will see from the photo below, I am located in Michigan (MI) and someone from Chile signed into my account at 10:59am via "Yahoo Mobile"
Email Hack PROOF
Yahoo Email Hack Notice
What To Do After a Hack: Password Change
The very first thing you want to do, like PRONTO, is change your password.
NEVER use any of the following "most popular" passwords:
- 123456 = (0.38%)
- password = 0.18%)
- welcome = (0.1%)
- ninja = (0.08%)
- abc123 = (0.06%)
- 123456789 = (0.05%)
- 12345678 = (0.05%)
- sunshine = (0.05%)
- princess = (0.05%)
- qwerty = (0.04%)
What To Do After a Hack: Create a Seal
The next thing you want to do is create a Yahoo Login Seal. The seal will help protect you from phishing / fraudulent attacks:
What to Do After A Hack: Change Connected Accounts
Did you know the EASIEST SITE to hack is Facebook? And by hacking into a Facebook the hacker can gain access to the associated email and since users have the option to "login to Facebook" using their email account; it's a simple process.
From music apps to games to anything; applications can access data on your smartphone. Smartphone hacking issues have become such a big issue that, according to Yahoo News) AT&T has plans to being selling Security Packages this year.
Be sure to change passwords to any linked accounts ASAP
How to Prevent Future Hacks: Avoid UNSUBSCRIBING
Have you gotten emails with Unsubscribe links, then clicked on them to "Unsubscribe"? This method is being used by hackers to compile databases of in-use emails. The hacker first uses an internet scouring program that produces a list of anything with an "@" symbol in it. They then create a solicitation / advertisement, and may even begin sending it out at annoying rates (with the goal of gathering as many Unsubscribes as possible. The Hacker never actually enters your email, but instead uses email spoofing programs to make the email appear that it was from you and sends it out.
Instead of Unsubscribing to these annoying emails, simply mark them as "SPAM".
How to Prevent Future Hacks: Instant Messenger
Yahoo Chat / Messenger (this also goes for ANY messaging service provided through email): Check your settings when logged into your email messaging service: If you do NOT use it from your PC, be sure to select the "LOG OUT" AND the "SAVE THIS OPTION" (it is called other things based on provider). Most email services that offer chat will automatically log you into chat as soon as you log into your email. - Here's the kicker: ANYONE can access your IP address and Port information AS SOON AS YOU ENGAGE IN A CHAT. Even though this information appears to be "hidden", there is a fairly simple process of pulling up the script for the chat user(s) and it only takes a matter for seconds.The only way to prevent potential hacks through messenger services is to only communicate via chat with people you know.
READ MY FOLLOW-UP ARTICLE
Next please read WHAT TO DO AFTER YOUR EMAIL HAS BEEN HACK AND SPAM SENT. This article will explain practical ways to help you get over the embarrassment of your current situation.
Has Your Email Been Hacked?
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