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Technology and Internet Emerging and current tech related issues. Internet, DRM, IP, and other technology related discussions.

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  #1  
Old 02-18-2013, 8:03 AM
3S16 3S16 is offline
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Default Help! My Email account got hijacked.

I signed on and tried to open my AOL mail. Couldn't do it.Tried changing the password. Wouldn't let me. Called AOL Tech Support. Some middle eastern dude (Surprise) said my account has been stolen. They would have to perform seven layers of cleaning to correct it - at $40 per layer! My wife got on her Facebook site and told all our friends not to open any email from us. She also has a Gmail account she has warned on.
Now I'm afraid whoever did this can hack into my on-line banking and auto deposit of my pension check and auto withdrawal on my mortgage that is coming up the first of the month. I went down and pulled out what money I had in the bank.
I have Norton 360 for protection on my computer. I called them and they have run full scans and found nothing. I run quick scans everyday and so far nothing.
I'm kinda old and pretty much computer illiterate and I don't know what to do. (I'm still waiting for the No. 2 pencil to come back.) Any guidence would be greatly appreciated.

Thank You
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  #2  
Old 02-18-2013, 8:12 AM
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Vacaville Vacaville is offline
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Dump it and get a new one. You're not going to want to use it anyways after it's been hacked. Problem solved.
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  #3  
Old 02-18-2013, 8:46 AM
3S16 3S16 is offline
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Should I be concerned about identity theft or my bank accounts being attacked?
Can that kind of info be gleened from an Email Account?
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  #4  
Old 02-18-2013, 9:01 AM
orchardhills orchardhills is offline
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The only way they can glean that type of information is if you stored it in your AOL account. Some people make a text file and leave their passwords in that text file.

Just for peace of mind you should change all sensitive accounts to a new password. Also, redirect the emails on those accounts to something other than your AOL account.
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  #5  
Old 02-18-2013, 9:11 AM
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Wow, I did 't even know AOL was still around. Just be aware GMail address books get hacked frequently as well. I would really just change providers to someone else and get a user friendly provider unlike AOL.
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  #6  
Old 02-18-2013, 9:16 AM
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It all depends on what information you kept within your email account and what other accounts are linked to the email account. For instance, if you have an old email message that contains your account login information from another website, say PayPal or an online banking website. Another aspect to keep in mind is that even though you may not have an actual message in your inbox that contains information, someone could very easily go to PayPal and file a "forgotten password" claim and in many cases a new or temporary password will be emailed to you. So if they can simply check your emails, they can probably access most accounts that you have tied to that email account. This is assuming you do NOT have a keylogger.

My advice, treat it as if you lost your wallet. Close any important accounts that can be tied to the email account, because if the account was compromised it doesn't take long to gather information if you know what you're after. They may have already done so without you knowing. Next, just abandon the old email, and certainly don't pay someone to "clean" it for you, they are selling you fool's gold. You can make a free email address with several hosts, Gmail and Hotmail to name a couple that I use. You can make as many as you want for free and this makes it easy to abandon one if you ever need to. The next suggestion I would give you is to either make a series of email addresses for different purposes. For instance I have accounts that are strictly used for online banking and money management purposes, with dedicated passwords and are only accessed from secure computers. These accounts and email addresses are only used for this purpose and no one but me and my banks/financial institutions know about. Then I have an email for personal use and an email for websites or registrations that I need to use but I know will net me a bunch of junk mail and the like. It may sound complicated, but it really isn't. Just have 2-3 email addresses (All free) and designate one for each purpose so that if something is ever compromised, you don't have to go closing accounts and stressing about who has what info. Keep in mind that if you rarely use your financial email account, and don't hand it out when registering for a forum or whatever else, almost no one will know it's there, which mean it won't be attacked. The last safeguard is accessing it from a safe computer. For most people who don't download often, the most common way you will obtain a keylogger is through a phishing email, so also be wary of any/all emails that you do open, especially on your "junk mail" account.
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Last edited by Meety Peety; 02-18-2013 at 9:18 AM..
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  #7  
Old 02-18-2013, 9:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3S16 View Post
Should I be concerned about identity theft or my bank accounts being attacked?
Can that kind of info be gleened from an Email Account?
If they got into your account then they may have your password, never use that password for anything else again. Other than that, they shouldn't be able to steal your identity, unless you put your social security number somewhere in your email.

The only information they can get is whatever you put on your email account and in the email text themselves. That's why I use fake information on all my email accounts.
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  #8  
Old 02-18-2013, 9:58 AM
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7 layers of cleaning? LOL wtf?

Can't they just change your email and get you back up and running? AOL wow..I might just go sign on for the good ol days. 2.5
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  #9  
Old 02-18-2013, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3S16 View Post
I signed on and tried to open my AOL mail. Couldn't do it.Tried changing the password. Wouldn't let me. Called AOL Tech Support. Some middle eastern dude (Surprise) said my account has been stolen. They would have to perform seven layers of cleaning to correct it - at $40 per layer! My wife got on her Facebook site and told all our friends not to open any email from us. She also has a Gmail account she has warned on.
Now I'm afraid whoever did this can hack into my on-line banking and auto deposit of my pension check and auto withdrawal on my mortgage that is coming up the first of the month. I went down and pulled out what money I had in the bank.
I have Norton 360 for protection on my computer. I called them and they have run full scans and found nothing. I run quick scans everyday and so far nothing.
I'm kinda old and pretty much computer illiterate and I don't know what to do. (I'm still waiting for the No. 2 pencil to come back.) Any guidence would be greatly appreciated.

Thank You
That middle eastern dude is trying to rip you off.

It is as simple as changing your password. I am not sure what number you called, but whatever number it was is probably the same people that stole your email account.

Dump the email addy and get another. While you are at it, dump AOL. I thought that racket went away in 1995 or so.
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  #10  
Old 02-18-2013, 10:27 AM
Oliver_Charles Oliver_Charles is offline
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***

Last edited by Oliver_Charles; 01-11-2014 at 1:35 PM..
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  #11  
Old 02-19-2013, 6:42 AM
3S16 3S16 is offline
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Thank You to all who responded. Your advice was very helpful -but I'm still holding on to my No. 2 pencils!
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  #12  
Old 02-19-2013, 9:52 PM
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Something sounds off. Let's say your account was compromised, to give you control again that should only involve resetting a password and any security questions. If your account was used to send spam/etc, it wouldn't really require any "cleaning." Certainly not 7 layers of it at ANY cost. Aside from reading email content the worst they can do is delete things... they really don't stand to gain anything from this.

Typically, threats to financial or other information from email are from either identifying/compromising information stored in the account or the ability for the account to be used for password resets for other services.

What number did you dial for AOL support? Where did you get this information from? How much identifiable information did you give this phone support rep? Your situation almost sounds like your computer/router had a DNS problem and/or browser hijack and you were redirected to a bogus AOL login page, with potentially a bogus AOL support rep.
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  #13  
Old 02-21-2013, 6:18 PM
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Get rid of AOL and get Gmail....way more secure. Change PW once a month. That works for me.
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  #14  
Old 02-21-2013, 7:29 PM
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is AOL still alive? 7 layers off what? just like everybody said stay with google or the new bing..
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  #15  
Old 02-21-2013, 7:42 PM
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I started using Google's 2-step authentication feature after one of my accounts was hacked. Works great, but can be somewhat cumbersome until you get used to it.

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