Tech

What to Do When Your Yahoo Mail Is Hacked

Also, how to know if you have been hacked

It can be hard to tell if someone has hacked into your Yahoo mail account, but there are several warning signs to look for. You should be especially vigilant if you learn of a widespread data breach that may have exposed your password or login information. When you suspect your Yahoo mail has been hacked or compromised, it’s important to act quickly to protect your data.

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How to know if your yahoo mail is hacked

It won’t always be obvious that someone has accessed your email and information, and that’s by design. The longer it takes to re-protect your account, the more the hacker can use it.

Here are some things to keep in mind.

Are you still receiving mail? You may notice a lack of messages in your inbox, which could be a sign that someone is getting there before you. It may be nothing; you may only have a day of slow email, but if you go several days without receiving anything, you should probably take a closer look.

Check your Sent folder. Hackers can use your address to spam your contacts and can leave behind evidence. This method isn’t a guarantee, but if you see messages in your Sent folder that you didn’t write, you probably have a problem.

Even if the messages aren’t in your outbox yet, your friends will probably mention that they received spam from you.

Pay attention to suspicious activity or unknown devices. When you sign in to your Yahoo account using a web browser, you can see which other devices are also signed in. Anger Account information below your profile picture in the upper right corner, then select Recent activity.

You’ll see all the devices that can access your account, along with their locations. If you see one that is unfamiliar to you, select disconnect to remove your access.

Check your other settings. Select the Settings gear on the Yahoo home page, and then select More settings to access settings such as filters, forwarding addresses, and the name that appears on messages you send. Hackers can modify them to intercept your email or affect how your account works.

Look for reports of security breaches. When services like Yahoo experience massive data breaches, you’ll see it in the news. Unfortunately, companies don’t always announce that breaches have occurred for weeks or months after the attacks happen, so by the time they make the news, your information may already be in trouble.

How to protect a hacked Yahoo mail account

If you discover strange and suspicious activity on your account or learn of a breach, you’ll want to lock down your data as soon as possible. Here are some steps you can take to protect your account.

Change your password. Two of the best ways to protect your important accounts are to keep your passwords up to date and not use the same password for multiple sites. You can use a password manager to generate and store unique credentials and automatically log you in to the sites you visit.

In addition to regular updates, you should make sure to choose strong passwords to further protect your account.

Don’t trust your password. Yahoo Mail offers several options to secure your account, which use your smartphone to authorize access. You can use both if you want, and it’s probably worth doing to make sure your account is as secure as possible.

  • Two-Step Authentication: Tells Yahoo to text you a code the first time you try to sign in with a new device or from a new location with your password . You won’t have to do this every time you sign in, unless you sign out of that device from your account.
  • A Yahoo account key: Skip the password altogether and link your login to an authorization on your phone through the Yahoo Mail app.

Edit your security questions and answers. Like your password, hackers can discover the questions you answer to prove that it really is you during the password reset process. These details are things like your mother’s maiden name, the year you graduated from high school, and the street you grew up on.

To be safe with these questions, make up answers that only you know. Dedicated hackers can find the right answers on the Internet, so entering the exact information may not be as secure as you’d like.

Sign up to receive notifications about data breaches. Credit monitoring services like Credit Karma and CreditWise will notify you via email and app notifications as soon as they detect that your information has been implicated in a leak. It won’t help you lock your Yahoo account if someone has already hacked it, but you will be notified and you will be able to react faster in case of future incidents.

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