Elie Burzstein published a report that revealed 1 in 4 online accounts gets hacked, and that number is climbing all the time.
More recently, close to 300 million online accounts were compromised. 24+ millions of those accounts were Gmail Accounts, spreading a mass epidemic fear among internet users everywhere.
Getting your Gmail Account hacked, Facebook account hacked or any account for that matter is frightening, but it doesn’t have to be devastating.
Here’s what to do if you think you’re one of the 24 million affected and how you can keep all your online accounts protected in the future.
Change Your Password
I got my Gmail Account hacked! NOW WHAT? If you’re lucky enough to still have access to your Gmail Accounts, you need to change the password immediately.
This will stop hackers from using the old hacked password to change details in your account settings.
You can change your Gmail password; choose a strong password that is resistant to hacking.
This will involve several layers of complexity including special characters on the keyboard, use lower and uppercase combinations and WordPress or phrases that are not obvious. (Like; Love or Money)
Having Your Gmail Accounts Hacks Puts Your Other Accounts At Risk!
Was my Facebook hacked along with my other accounts? It’s not obvious to everyone, but sharing your password between your various accounts is one of the easiest ways to help hackers really screw you over.
One the hackers have got your password, they can hop from one account to the next with the same password, accessing all of your accounts with ease.
Use different passwords for each account and keep track of them all with a password manager like one of these; LastPass is a good option as well.
There’s no time to lose. If someone has access to your account, it’s only a matter of time before they find all of your personal data and exploit it for their benefit.
Use a tool like this one to sweep your entire account for any sensitive information that might be stored there and remove it safely.
This free tool helps find passwords, banking details and more, it also alerts you if any other data is viewable in future.
Check Latest Activity
Take a look at your activity log to see if there’s been activity when you are not on your account.
Scroll down to the bottom if the page, click details at the very bottom right corner (it will be a link underneath the last account activity: X minutes ago), and pursue the list of recent activity on your Gmail Accounts.
Here you’ll see if there’s anything you don’t recognize, whether it’s an unusual device or a time when you now you weren’t using your account.
Weird activities logged are a good indication that someone is accessing your account without your permission.
Review Recovery Information
Go to your account page, and review the recovery options you have listed.
There should be a familiar email address and phone number listed.
If an unfamiliar name or number is listed, change this immediately.
Regardless, you should change the security question. Note: Don’t forget to check that the recovery email account is secure too.
Review Other Important Account Details
Once you’ve covered the vital details like password and recovery info, it’s a good idea to do a full sweep of your account details to make sure nothing else was tampered with.
Under your Gmail Settings, go through the tabs and check things like:
- Check the General tab, check the signature and vacation responder.
- Under the account tab, review the “send mail as” setting.
- Check the filters tab; check that new filters haven’t been added.
- Often hackers will setup a filter for your bank to send emails directly to their email address instead of yours.
- Under the forwarding and POP/IMAP tab, verify that no emails are being forwarded.
Get Help Immediately If You Can No Longer Access Your Account
If you can’t get into your Gmail Account at all, that probably means someone has changed your password, and you need to act fast.
Choose the “I’m having other problems signing in” option.
You’ve settled your Gmail Accounts, but the problem doesn’t stop there.
Since hackers use one web account to access another, you need to make sure the rest of your accounts are safe as well.
- Check your other internet accounts including social media, banking, photo sharing, and check if they’ve been hit and change the passwords regardless.
- Run and maintain and updated anti-virus on all
It’s so easy for a hacker to sneak a virus onto your computer or phone, and then no amount of password changing or protective layers will help.
- Two-step verification is one of the strongest
layers of defense you can use.
It requires anyone who wants to access your Gmail accounts from a new device to enter a verification code that is sent to your phone only.
Without this code, access is restricted. Set up two-step (also known as two-factor)verification like this;
Go to your account login page.
Turn on two-step verification under the sign in & security section. Now a code will be sent to your phone whenever anyone attempts to log into your account. You can use the remember me function to make login more convenient from regularly used device.
Protect Yourself Before You Get Hacked Again Using A Reliable Protection App
Finally, your fears of having your Gmail accounts hacked again can be put to rest by getting LogDog for all your devices.
You can use the app for iOS or android, so you can cover all your base.
A multi-account protect app like LogDog is on the lookout 24/7 for signs of unusual activity.
If suspious activity is picked up, you will immediately receive a notification alert.
This enables you to change your password straight away, before a hacker has a chance to create havoc to your business or private life.