How to protect your e-mail account from hackers?
“Can you email those photos today?”, “Ohh yesterday I forgot to
e-mail you even though I was planning to do so, really sorry, a silly
mistake” This is a snapshot of a heard (not listened) conversation of
two young guys in the bus that I was travelling few days ago….During my
school days there were e-mails but they were not so popular among us. We
had limited access to the internet, hence we knew very little about
e-mails. However, time has changed rapidly and now it is hard to find a
youngster who does not have an e-mail address.
E-mail has simply become the most widely used communication
methodology over the internet. Since there are many free e-mail services
provided by Google, Yahoo, Hotmail and so on many people have e-mail
accounts which have storage around 2 giga bites (GBs). So, in this
article I thought to give a basic overview of e-mails and also provide
some vital facts on protecting your e-mail account from hackers.
1.What can you do to protect your e-mail account from hackers?
Have a strong password: Password should not be your name, hometown,
age, school name as personal information like those can be easily
retrievable in the contemporary world with the growth of the internet,
search engines and social networks. Password of your email account must
be a combination of letters (abcdef…), numbers (1234….) and special
characters (!@#$%....). There are even several strong password
generators available to help you pick a secure password. If you prefer
to choose the password yourself, don't use simple words.
2.Obscure the answers to your security questions: You can do your
best to choose the most obscure questions when you are signing up for a
new account, but you still cannot guarantee that that information is
outside of the reach of anyone. The real key lies in obscuring your
answers. Here are some examples:
a.What is your pet’s name: My answer would be: WeirdQuestion PetName
b.What is your favorite sports team? My answer would be:
InsaneQuestion SportsTeam ElleRascals
3.Be aware of a phishing scam: Never respond to an unexpected email
or web site that asks you for your personal information or account login
4.Always use https when logging into your email account: The word
HTTPS represents Hyper Text Transfer Protocol and Security sockets
layer. This protects your valuable information from others and also
prevents them from stealing it. Since they don’t have access to it, how
can they steal it? It is impossible for them to do so. And this service
is quite good because you can use it anywhere throughout the whole world
but you have to make sure that you don’t use the normal http which is
always prone to hackers.
5.Install firewall, anti-virus and anti-spyware protection on your
computer and keep them up to date: Automated updates for your virus
scanner and regularly scheduled full scans for spyware is best. Windows
users with newer computers can get Microsoft Security Essentials. Some
commonly used standalone antivirus software that can be used includes
Avast Anti-Virus, Norton Internet Security and Spybot S & D. Windows
users (not pirated copies) remember to let your computer automatically
update windows so that will help the updated antivirus and internet
security software to perform effectively. And make sure you update your
browser too. Firefox usually informs you whenever they release a newer
version or update.
6.Avoid logging into your accounts from un-trusted computers:
Un-trusted computers include any computer that you do not maintain
yourself. This includes high risk public computers such as the computers
at cyber cafes, your local library and un-trusted Wi-Fi zones but also
includes computers that belong to your friends and family that could
already be infected with spyware.
7.These tips will almost protect you being hacked, but we cannot give
you a 100% guarantee that your e-mail account will not be hacked as
there are intelligent but unethical, cunning eavesdroppers around the