6 Must-dos All Yahoo Mail Users Must Do After The 1 Billion Accounts Hack

Yahoo mail

Earlier this week Yahoo confirmed the hack of its database with over 1 billion password hashes stolen by hackers, and without breaking a sweat hackers could crack the hashes into plain text passwords.

Yahoo mail

This means billion of the mail users are at mercy of stolen password and stolen identity. We all know passwords are the keys to our digital properties, so if you own a Yahoo account and don’t want any bad guy to near your digital property with Yahoo, I implore you to follow the following must-dos.

6 Must-dos To Protect Your Yahoo Mail Against Hackers.

  1. Change your password: Yahoo suggested this already, and common sense must have guided you to doing this, too. However if you forget or you don’t plan to change your password, please do straight away.
    Changing your password renders the stolen password hashes useless (in your case). The result of the analysis of the hashes would give the hackers your old password which will be invalid.
  2. Delete welcome messages of registrations: When you register on a number of websites, your username and password are sent to your email as part of a welcome message. Access to these kinds of messages by hackers makes you vulnerable to multiple hacks on those websites.
    Therefore, my advice is, you search your email for welcome messages you received from websites you registered on. When you see these messages delete them. If you are afraid that you would forget the login details in the messages, you can copy them offline or save them to cloud.
  3. Ensure inbox messages are not forwarding: If an email is set to auto-forward, all messages entering the inbox would automatically forward to the receiving email. If a hacker has accessed your email before you, he might have set your inbox to auto-forward to his email. So ensure your email is not forwarding to somewhere. To check forwarding settings in Yahoo Mail, click on the Gear Icon, then on Settings, then on Account Tab, then on your default email address, then scroll down on the pop-up window until you see Access your Yahoo Mail elsewhere. Ensure the box below it is unchecked.
  4. Enable two-step verification: This allows Yahoo to add extra layer of security to your account. When enabled, a security code would be sent to your phone anytime you or someone is trying to access your mail from a new device. This code will be in addition to entering your account password.
    To enable two-step verification, click on where you see your name at the top right corner, beside Home. Then click on Account Info—this will open a new tab. On the new tab, click on Account Security, then click on the  Switch in front of Two step verification to enable it.
  5. Watch out for phishing: Hackers know that most Yahoo Mail users would have changed their passwords after the announcement of this incident. So they need a way to get back valid passwords and phishing is one of the surest ways to get them.
    Consequently, they would be sending out phishing messages to users—disguising as Yahoo support staff— and asking users to re-verify their new passwords. Be on the look out; ensure the emails you receive about password verification is directly from Yahoo.
    While access my Yahoo Mail after this breach incident, Yahoo used pop-up windows to notify me that I might have been affected by the hack and then asked me to take some actions. You should see something like that, too. Any email asking you to click a link that redirects you to another website that asks you to input your new password is a red flag.
  6. Consider switching to Gmail: Personally I have discarded Yahoo since the days when one will need to fight World War III with CAPTCHAs before you can sign in to your account. All my communications with email is now on Gmail. I think Gmail is easy to use, more secure and its interface is cool. You can even customize Gmail to look the way you want. Moreover, Gmail provides you with some value added services that other email service providers do not.

These 6 must-dos are what I advise all Yahoo Mail users to do before it is too late. The first five on the list are the real must-dos that you must do if you like to continue using Yahoo Mail. If you don’t trust Yahoo again, my number six must-do should be enough for you. But while switching to Gmail, make sure you delete messages in your Yahoo inbox and possibly deactivate the account. This ensures nobody would ever access messages in the inbox again.

For more resources on  guiding yourself against stolen password, consider seeing this article.

Posted by Adedapo Olatunde

Geek. Webhead. Editor at Techrabytes. Minimalist. Environmentalist. Aspiring Martian. I'm on Facebook and Twitter

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