Thursday, July 11, 2013

Why You Should Delete Emails Bearing Password or Accounts Information

Frequently, when you sign up for an online account, the account provider sends you an email with your log in and password details. When you buy a software product, providers send you an activation key. If you leave these email messages in your email account, you should think again.

If hackers, or anyone else manages to access your email account or hard drive, they can do a search for such terms as "passwords" and stand a good chance of accessing your password details. That's why smart agencies like the Australian Taxation Office always send passwords by mail in a tamper proof envelope.

What to do

Some email clients like MS Outlook allow you to select a number of email messages and save them in a TXT file. If you have an email system that allows it, print your messages and then either copy the TXT file to a USB drive or some location where it cannot be hacked eg, an encrypted file. Then delete the email messages with the passwords.

In future, when you receive an email with private, sensitive information, copy the information somewhere or save the message and delete the message from your email system.

I use Roboform Password Manager which protects all my passwords, makes them available at the click of a mouse button and has a handy feature called "Safenotes".

RoboForm: Learn more...

Safenotes is as it sounds, an encrypted and locked place where you can file notes. Guess where I place my activation keys?

You don't have to use RoboForm, but you need to make sure you don't leave your emails with sensitive information in your email account. Come up with a solution that suits your particular circumstances and stick with it.


PS: Another alternative is to use a product like Folder Lock to encrypt your important folders and files. I use it to encrypt my client files.

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