Most of us don’t realize just how much confidential information is stored in our email accounts. Learn about the information a cybercriminal can get just from your email address and what activities they could perform:
1. Carry out credential stuffing
Cybercriminals are hoping that you will use the same log-ins on other accounts. They will try to open them too by using automated software to inject credentials into login forms.
2. Reset your other accounts
Most websites email a password reset link, and, with access to your email, a cybercriminal will be able to use reset links to change passwords on your other accounts.
3. Access your highly confidential information
If you've ever sent bank statements to our accountant, rental agreements containing contact details or highly sensitive data to our lawyer, cybercriminal will have access to all this information.
4. Steal your identity and impersonate you
If the cybercriminal gets enough information, they can use the data to steal your identity and apply for services under your name.
5. Steal financial information
One of the biggest risks you’ll face from an email hack is having your financial information stolen. Once cybercriminals have you email, they will try to reset you bank account login details and, if successful, might begin issuing transactions. In addition, they can use your credit card details, open bank accounts in your name, and take out loans damaging your credit score.
6. Send phishing emails to your contacts
Cybercriminals could reach out to your contacts and send spam, phishing or other malicious emails in an attempt to gain access to other accounts.
What should you do to protect your email account?
- Don't reuse your email passwords on other sites
- Switch on multi-factor authentication (MFA), which will mitigate the risk of password theft
- Don’t fill any personal or log-in info online if you receive an unsolicited request to do so
- Don’t log-in to email on public Wi-Fi or a shared computer