Security breaches and hacking attempts are far too common in today’s online world. How do you work to protect yourself from cybercrime? The first step is to not re-use passwords, especially for high value accounts. Make sure the passwords you use for financial accounts, at online shopping sites, social media outlets, and email providers are unique to each account.
Why are email providers on that list? It’s more than just for the havoc a spammer can cause if they take over your email account. Consider the most common way web sites reset a forgotten password for you – they email you a new one. If someone has control of your email account, they can visit your critical sites and use the “forgot password” option to reset it to a password of their choosing, gaining access to your account and locking you out.
It can be difficult to remember lots of passwords. If that’s a challenge for you, consider using a password vault or password manager. Of course, make sure that the password to your vault is the best and most unique password of all. But most importantly, don’t let a breach at one location expose all of your other online accounts.