How to protect your email and personal info from being stolen is everyone’s concern. More so when an account like Reddit gets hacked, which it did last night. Every day we hear about another huge data breach. Maybe the Russians hacking the DNC bothers you, maybe not. But when it’s platforms where YOU have an account, like Yahoo, Reddit, Well’s Fargo, Microsoft and others, suddenly you pay attention. Here is is a very simple tip to avoid security breach of your private info.
So everything is online these days. And from a functional use basis, that is great: I can access my info anywhere at any time.
That also makes it more vulnerable to hacks and cyber thieves, however.
Back in the early days of the Internet, I was an AOL user, before broadband was even a thing. Yes, we were still using dial-up, can you imagine?
When new services starting competing with AOL and Yahoo mail services, I almost deleted my account … but didn’t.
So now, while I have consolidated my business-oriented things into as few profiles and accounts as possible, I still have that AOL account lying out there. With all the hacks over the last couple of years, having that account came in handy.
When you sign up to places like Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, etc., use a secondary email account. Moreover, leave that email account as barren of information as possible. Should, God forbid, my AOL ever get hacked, there is nothing in there to worry about: it’s an empty account.
You can create an empty account of your own at any number of places: Gmail, AOL Yahoo, etc. Just remember to leave as much possible blank in the profile you set up.
It’s not a perfect solution, but it does push the hackers one step further away from your information.
How Not to Be Speared
How often have you gotten an email from a source you know? Was it really from them? Another safety tactic is to resist the urge to click links you get in an email. It may seem harmless, like PayPal or GoDaddy or your Bank telling you they need you to update your account or it will be locked. But when inspected closely, you’ll notice it’s not from support@thecompany, but rather firstname.lastname@example.org or some other closely named URL.
To be safe, just go to the browser and log in directly. If there is an alert it will show up there. If it doesn’t, someone was phising and trying to spear you.
Also, check out how to avoid email scams