Tips for safeguarding email accounts in the wake of recent Yahoo security breach

Q: What are some tips for safeguarding email accounts in the wake of recent Yahoo security breach?

A:

Step 1: Change your Yahoo password.  Make sure to create a password that is complicated and memorable.

Step 2: Enable two-step authentication on all personal email accounts, if it is supported by the email service provider. Check your email provider’s website for more details  This is a simple process that is uniform across most applications. Some providers call this as a two-step verification system, where you have to provide your mobile number to either receive a call or text message with a One Time Passowrd (OTP) similar to some banking websites. For Yahoo here is the detailed instructions https://help.yahoo.com/kb/SLN5013.html

Step 3. Monitor all your accounts for any kinds of suspicious behaviour. Do not open emails from unknown sources and delete anything that appears questionable. When in doubt, think before you click! . Once you click , damage is already done. This reminds about the old days where the signboard used to mention ” Dial before you dig “, if any ground digging work was planned and we may need to know about the underground pipes, hydro connection, gas connection et.al.

Step 4. Do not rely only on security questions to protect your account/password. Most security questions are common across applications, and the answers are often found on public social media sites.Try to be creative with your answers and don’t give usual answers which could be guessed without much effort. For eg: In your security question about the school you studied, maybe give some other school’s name , which only you can think of or relate ( your aunt’s school or even a fictitious name)

 

Step 5. Do not use the same password for personal and business email accounts.  While it may be easy and convenient for many people to use the same kinds of passwords across multiple email accounts, it becomes easier for attackers to compromise your multiple different email accounts.

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