News Recap: The Yahoo Breach

ID NotifyYahoo recently disclosed that it has found a breach of more than one billion use accounts that happened back in August 2013. Stolen user account information may include names, email addresses, phone numbers, birthdate, hashed passwords, and in some cases, security questions and answers.

Even if you do not have a Yahoo account, this incident services as a good reminder to make sure you’re staying cyber aware and following best practices when it comes to your online security.

Utilize Identity Monitoring Services
Invest in an identity monitoring service that keeps an eye on your personal information, like your email address. These services can alert you if your monitored information is found compromised online, so that you can take action to mitigate your risk of identity theft.

Rethink Your Password
If you’re still using “password” as your password, it’s time to update it. Create strong passwords for your email accounts, and other online accounts, using a mix of upper- and lower-case letters, numbers and special characters. Avoid reusing password across multiple accounts. If one of your accounts is compromised, other accounts may be at risk where you reused those same credentials.

Say Yes to Software Updates
Get out of the habit of deferring your software updates for your computer or apps. These updates typically address critical security vulnerabilities, which is why it’s important to pay attention to software updates when prompted.

Watch Out for Phishing Scams
Phishing scams come in the form of unsuspecting emails that may ask for personal information or try get you to click on a malicious link. Don’t fall for it. When in doubt, contact the person or business that the email came from to confirm the email is legitimate.

This isn’t the first breach of an email service provider, and it won’t be the last. By taking a proactive approach to your online security, you’re doing your part to help minimize your risk.