Was your email hacked? Next steps to safeguard your account

One of the most embarrassing technology related events can be when someone informs you they received an email from you that looked suspicious.  When your email password is compromised, you may feel lost about what steps to take next.  We have helped clients and individuals through this task and process and we can offer some suggestions.

The very first step you should take is to change your password to something extremely different than what it was before.  Don't just add an extra number,  or maybe one more asterisk.  Change at least 5 or 6 characters in your password.

The following tips are useful to creating secure passwords:

  • Use password combinations with letters in upper case and lower case
  • Use numbers and special symbols in passwords if they are allowed.  Not all websites allow special symbols in passwords
  • Make your e-mail password different from other passwords that you use on other websites.  This relates back to our training on the dark web.  When websites are breached, passwords are posted and if that password matches the same password that you use on other websites, then you may have additional compromises to deal with.

Once you have changed your password, go through the process of informing everyone in your autocomplete list or address book that you had been breached.  In the email, inform people to delete the email and not click on any links in the email.  A lot of times, emails are sent out with documents attached or there are links to documents that may contain malware or worse ransomware.  Add a reminder that if the email was accidently opened or a link was clicked, to perform an antivirus scan or malware scan on the device used to open the email.

Some e-mail providers can implement MFA or Multi Factor Authentication.  MFA implements an additional way of notifying the user that an attempt has been made to access their account and will generate a verification code to the user's cell phone on file, or a phone call back to the user with the verification code in order to proceed accessing the account.

Ask Chicagoland Cloud today how we can help implement MFA for your business