One of the perils of using the internet is that there is never a guarantee that your private data is secure in the world of internet. A tabloid once reported that on an average 9 Gmail accounts are stolen a day out of a million. Once, a Russian hacker siphoned off 4.93 million usernames and passwords and posted it on the internet. Then, why use these digital accounts when they are insecure? Time and again, it has been proved that due to our excessive reliance on the digital existence, it has become increasingly hard to live without webmail, social media or the internet itself. The more we make our presence evident on the internet, along comes the credible threat of hacking and other malice intent from a total stranger.
The digital attack is aimed at an oblivious user from a grinning stranger whose sole intention is to rob you off your privacy and personal data. But then, many who may want to hack have their reasons such as to expose their cheating partners, to watch over their children’s online activity and varieties of personal reasons. Whatever the reasons are, this article will keep a straight perspective in answering the simple question that many harbor in their minds – How to hack an email account? Internet security giants like Symantec have warned users of the pitfall how scammers are successfully taking advantage of web-mail users who rely on Gmail, Yahoo, and Outlook.
How To Hack An Email Account?
In the present day, it is so easy to access another person’s account that you don’t have to be a hacker to achieve such a feat. People are easily spoofed and believe almost anything that they are told to do. Such lax behavior and being oblivious to the threats that they leave themselves exposed are the main reasons for the email accounts being hacked in packs.
The statistics indicate that the criminals who attempt hacking are mostly from these five countries – South Africa, Nigeria, China and Ivory Coast. These criminals attack the people globally, fraudulently extracting the usernames and passwords from them (mostly handed over by the victim themselves in blind faith). Did you know it is easy to gain access to a person’s web-mail account by knowing the mobile number and email id?
Here Is How That Can Be Accomplished
A hacker accesses the Gmail website and enters the email ID of the victim. Once he is asked to enter the password, of course, he isn’t aware of it. So he clicks on the “Need Help” section to seek alternative means to gain access in case the user forgets the password. The Gmail wouldn’t register this as a suspicious activity and will continue to prompt the user the help in gaining access.
Since Gmail has rolled out a feature that makes it compulsory for its users to register their phone number, the victim would have a registered phone number. So, if he or she has forgotten the password they would receive the 6 digit code to regain access.
Now, considering that the victim has registered their phone number, the hacker will request for access code to be sent to the phone. He would request the code by selecting “Get a verification code on my phone” to get a temporary code to access the account. He then immediately sends a faux message from an unknown number claiming that the victim’s account has registered a suspicious activity, and to reply the code that Google initially sent to their phone to take necessary precaution. The victim in blind faith responds by replying to hackers phone, the original code that Google has sent.
The hacker will receive this code and gain access to the victims account. To avoid alerting the victim, he sends a message after resetting the password informing them that the account has been verified, and they can access their account using the fabricated password given back to the victim. This attack will remain unnoticed until the user manually checks the preferences and settings in their account. A hacker can also provide an alternative mailbox to receive all the victim’s future emails while the user whose account has been compromised is oblivious to the hacking.
Despite Google having robust means to thwart a hacking attempt and having efficient means to cease the function of emergency recovery option if it detects an attempt, criminals still efficiently work their way around to continue hacking into others email account. Google conducted a three-year-old study and here is the compilation of facts and figures.
A Successful Scam Is Known To Occur Just 45% Of Time
Criminals employ convincing tactics by fraudulently falsifying identical pages (similar to real web-mail account). The users who are spoofed by such emails requesting the login details, promptly hand it over to the hacker. When you click on the links sent to you, you will be redirected to a mock-up page that is identical to the Gmail. Tip: Do not email your personal details to anyone. No authentic web-mail will ever ask its users to declare login details. Also, pay attention to the URL to make sure you are accessing the actual webmail and not the fraudulent pages.
Your Account Will Be Compromised In Less Than A Day
The moment your login details are made available to the hackers, your account will be hijacked in hours (seven hours in most cases). If you are unfortunate, less than 20 % of users have their account hijacked in 30 minutes, and you will be automatically locked out of your account.
Tip: Register for account access alert that will inform you if any suspicious attempt was made to login to your account. You can prefer to be informed via a text message on your phone or backup mail. If you receive such emails, you must act fast to foil any attempt.
3 Minutes Is All It Takes To Scan Your Email
Hackers are often on the lookout for valuable things like bank account information, personal images, and your signatures. If you have connected all your account to the common email ID (for shopping websites and credit cards) hacker will be delighted to use a single key that opens all locks. They will search your mail using keywords like “bank” and “wire transfer” etc. Tip: Perform a manual search and if you detect any keywords that are present in many emails delete them. Do not preserve any sensitive data in your email.
Your Friends Are Next In Line After You
Once your account is compromised, a hacker will target your friends by forwarding them a bait mail. It will continue from one person to another. Sometimes, hackers who gain access to your email account will delete all the contact information to prevent you from alerting all your friends.