Waking up to find out your email has been hacked is no one’s idea of a fun day — but it happens more than you might think. Even if you are using what you consider to be a strong password, professional hackers have a gift for cracking codes. And once your email has been hacked, it’s a race to resolve the problem before your data has been collected and used in malicious ways. Knowing the signs to look for when it comes to hacked email is the first important step you can take toward protecting your data and privacy. This is the scary way to know if your email has been hacked — and tips on what you can do to resolve the issue.
Scary Sign: You Can’t Log Into Your Email
Every year we hear news of data breaches and hacks where private information is compromised or stolen. A big giveaway that your email has been hacked is that your account will not recognize your recent login attempts — even if your password is correct, says Sunil Bhuyan, the founder & CEO at Techieinsider.
“It almost gives you a mini heart attack when you realize that you have been locked out of your own account with thousands of business contacts and confidential emails,” Bhuyan said. “I always recommend enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) for email access because it ensures that nobody can hack into your account even if they have your password. If you receive notifications on your phone that someone is trying to log in, change the password immediately without any hesitation.”
Stay Aware Of Security Breaches
Staying up to date on any security breaches from sites which you frequent is a smart way to stop a potential email hacking before it happens. “Just this week 200 million twitter users had their email addresses leaked through an api vulnerability by a hacker called ‘Ryushi’ then sold in a large dataset through a forum called breacher,” Tech Expert Krishna Madala, founder of Sloped.xyz, provides as an example. “Whether you like it or not hacks happen all the time, that’s just the nature of the internet. The best thing to do is keep a close eye on sensitive information. If you are worried and have trouble keeping up with all the news you can use a site like https://haveibeenpwned.com/ to check if your email has been leaked in any data breaches.”
Do This If You Suspect Your Email Has Been Hacked
“First thing’s first: change your password and any accounts you have which share the same password with that account,” Madala said. And Madala, Bhuyan, and most tech experts are in agreement about this second step: “Always make sure you have two-factor authentication set up so that a hacker can’t gain access to your account simply by getting your password.”
A bit of proactivity coupled with knowledge of what to look for when it comes to an email hacking can save you the enormous headache of having your data stolen and shared against your will.