This revolving door is getting old!  Yahoo email account are getting blasted again by hacks frustrating recipient and bewildering users.  Is it a hack? Is it a break-in?  no one really knows, but it’s running crazy again!  This happened big-time back in January, and again in April.  Here it is June and happening again – maybe a 3 month cycle?  I’ve received no less than a dozen hacked emails from people who obviously have me in their contact books.  I recognize most if not all of them.

Yahoo Email Getting Hacked

Yahoo Email Getting Hacked! I’ve personally had no less than a dozen “hacked” emails. Here are some of them across 3 of my accounts.

What is it?

When someone’s account get’s “hacked”, the entire contact/address book get’s spammed.  These spammy links  are the culprit, and it seems that when the user clicks on said links, access is then allowed to even more accounts.  Flaws in Yahoo’s mail systems have allowed these hackers easy access, even without actual passwords, as confirmed in the previous reports.  I don’t see it any different this time.

The subject line always contains the User Name of the person who has been hacked.  Sometime is will be a plain, direct message, like it’s a “New” compose. Sometimes it will be a FW: or a RE: indicating a forwarded or replied to email.

They usually begin with “Hello” or simply the the link (aka “Spammy URL”) is always some form of un-recognizable gibberish.  In fact, they are working URLs and take you to the sites that “open the doors” back to your yahoo email account.

  • It appears that no matter how often one changes, or how strong one’s password is, it’s no stopping them.
  • As far as I can tell, it’s due to people, likely more yahoo users. clicking spammy links.
  • These are NOT due to Facebook, social media or any similar site.

More Serious?

There does seem to be some reports of computers actually getting hacked and having malware, or in this case, “Scareware” installed.  This poor reporter was duped into forking over $300 to a “representative” from yahoo.  How did it happen?  She was tricked into calling a bogus number, not unlike “email phishing” where users are duped into entering their personal data into a bogus website.  Read the full story here.

What Can You Do?

If you receive one – Learn to recognize what these spammy emails look like. When you get one, simply delete it.  (You can “mark as spam” but caution there as you don’t want to block your mother’s email email int he future.

If your account was hacked – you ‘can’ reply back out to everyone in your address book to 1) first apologize, and 2) inform them that it was a simple hack (let them know that it’s Yahoo’s fault, not yours so they don’t have to worry about)  Then, go ahead and change your password . . again.

Yahoo even has an entire support section on what to do if you’re hacked and here. They also have a “Wizard” that steps you through the process.  Those can’t hurt. Honestly, there are so many topics and articles on what to do if you’re hacked, it can likely get very confusing, very fast. Makes me think they should focus more on fixing the problem than writing endless articles on how to fix it.

But the best thing you can do?

Consider Dropping Yahoo! All Together

Finally, if you were hacked, or even if you were not, consider changing email providers all together.  I never did like Yahoo email – found it clunky and slow.  I am personally a fan of Google/Gmail and have our own along with dozens of our clients running on Google Apps (which is technically Gmail) I moved my wife over to a Google Apps account on her personal domain and she still says it’s one of the best things she’s ever done . . tech wise!   If you or your organization wants to learn about converting your email system (or even personal account) please let us know.

I like Yahoo overall, but do not like their email one bit.  It’s sad to see so many being affected by this and I feel bad for Yahoo . . especially when entire regioinal ISP’s such as British Telecom do things like announce that they’ve finally had it, and will be moving their entire 6 million user base to a new platform soon.  Yes, 6 million.  Just hang on for September!