Gmail from Google is one of the most popular and yet the most vulnerable e-mail services. Being the largest search engine in the world with over 1 billion e-mail users and corresponding amount of payment and confidential information, it attracts scammers right from the inception until now. This data inspired us at Hideez investigate the topic and provide tips on how to secure your Gmail account in 2018.
So, is there a way to protect yourself against all odds in a digital world?
Lull yourself NOT into a false sense of security. It is a matter of time when your account is suspended. However, there are a few steps you can take now, to make your Google account safer and secure. Gmail is used not only as a Login for Android, a popular operating system for activating and accessing the Play Store, but also as an access point to many different platforms like AdSense, YouTube, Analytics, AdWords, and more. Techniques like Social Engineering or phishing are used to lead user into deception and the giants like Google often fail before massive attacks like the one on the 4th of May 2017.
Passwords are very easy to determine. People are not very creative when it comes to generating a password; they commonly use their date of birth, address, phone number, social security, car’s number, mother and father’s name, etc. as the last mile in what is meant to protect them. Make sure you choose a long, random password that has a combination of lowercase and uppercase letters, numbers, and special symbols.
Ideally, you can use the one-time-password (OTP) generator. Don’t forget to polish all with the fresh update of the Antivirus on your PC. Otherwise, all your attempts to defend against keyloggers and other spying malware that steal credentials would be useless. There are a few solutions for OTP generators like Hideez Key or Fido; it is up to you to choose.
At the bottom of your Gmail account page you may see “Last Account Activity”. In the tab “Details” you may review last logins, IPs, country, applications using your credentials, etc. It gives you insights on suspicious activity like Login from location you’ve never been or application you have never used. Once you see anything like this change your password immediately and add the second factor of authentication.
Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a recommended and yet not very popular security method. 90% of Gmail users are not protected against cyber-attacks despite the fact that two-factor authentication was introduced by big G back in 2011and only 10% of users realize the potential impact of being hacked. This security practice verifies your identity when you log into a website by requiring you to both know something and have something. The thing you need to know is a user name and a password or a PIN; the thing you need to have is a mobile phone, USB dongle or other wireless device like Hideez that can generate one-time codes. Many services you use offer and recommend the 2FA. These include: Apple (iCloud and other services), Google (Gmail and other services), Microsoft Office 365, Yahoo!, PayPal, Dropbox, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, SnapChat, Tumblr, etc. Yet, end users ignore this recommendation as not convenient or unnecessary.
Of course, two-factor authentication can be annoying, especially when you have multiple accounts for different purposes and all of them send you SMS to prove your identity. As an alternative to SMS, you can use Hideez Key password manager to store up to 1000 passwords for different accounts and it will seamlessly prove your identity.
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So how do you set up a 2FA for your Gmail account:
First, go to Gmail account >Open your profile>Select the ‘My Account ‘> Now click on ‘Sign-in and Security‘>Open ‘Passwords and Sign-in Methods‘>Now scroll below Password to see the 2-step verification option and turn in ON>Enter your mobile phone number and verify it.
Got an invitation to a party from a stranger? Or a check for 100 000 USD? Unlikely it is a blessing, rather the file has a malware which will cause a breach in your account and steal credentials, like for example Vega Stealer
You always put your mom’s maiden name as a security question to your bank account. Or a car number to your Gmail. Or your Dad’s name for your PayPal. Seriously? Is it so hard to guess? Having your phone number, security number, knowing your bank account balance, your top three calls, and a security question can verify your digital identity. So, it sounds like a good idea to change security questions now and then.
Few tips of how to change or set it up for your Gmail.
Go to your Account. Click on the gear icon (settings) > Accounts and Import >> Google Account Settings.
Now select ‘Change password recovery options’ and add a security question.
HTTPS or Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure is used for secure communication between your browser and the server of the website you are visiting. Some websites are protected with dedicated IP address and SSL certificate, some of them are not. As an e-mail marketer, you probably visit tons of websites daily for content, so we recommend using HTTPS Everywhere extension for all your web wanders.
Yes, Google does a great job for their email service AND No, when it comes to the end-point security. Stay alert and protect yourself.