Originally Posted by ferco
I believe ( in fact , I know ) my email address has been "hijacked". Are your bank / checking / brokerage accounts and passwords encrypted into your hard drive? Do you need to change the account numbers and all the passwords for all the accounts or just password ?.
IT friends have recommended changing to gmail ( currently aol ) and loading new Windows software and there's no need to purchase a new computer with new hardware. We already had Kapersky security on the computer, but apparently that didn't do much good.
Don't have any experience with AOL, but my yahoo email (and many of my friends utilizing yahoo email) had been regularly hacked. I switched to gmail as my primary email and there has been no gmail hacking - so far. I don't like proprietary email accounts as I usually lost access when cancelling their service (AT&T, Comcast, etc). Some online email providers are getting very intrusive and are requiring/requesting you to provide personal info to maintain email with them. I dumped my "throwaway' Hotmail account because of their requirements, and maintain a "throwaway" yahoo account. Throwaway email accounts allow you to control unwanted emails. Only give gmail address to family/friends. This is what I've done to minimize email hacking.
This usually isn't a breach of your computer. Most of the hacking occurs on the yahoo servers where you store your email. Yahoo appears to be aware of this breach, but hasn't properly addressed the problem according to info on the internet). They hack the yahoo servers and obtain your stored email addresses and spam email everyone using you as the originator. This is usually evident by the addresses on the spam coming from you to your friends, with all of them being listed in the To: area and a potentially nasty link in the body of the email (I always Bcc: everyone to protect them from being spammed when I forward any good jokes). Spammers hit and run quickly (in and out of your account on the yahoo server). When this happens - you need to go into your account and change your password. Yahoo does catch this hack (sometimes), and will lock your account and require you to change your password.
It's hard to completely delete an email account. A lot of friends' email accounts remember your (old) email address, and will occasionally send you email to your old address. I keep the yahoo email address open, but have moved all files over to gmail. I also deleted all of my address book off the yahoo account to prevent future hacking.
I utilize a free email program (Zimbra) to obtain all of my email. I also store all of my email offline with this program (no synchronizing/storage of email on gmail servers for security). I back up the email on Zimbra and store it on a memory stick in case it gets lost or my computer crashes. I do obtain email on our phone, but don't delete or move email when accessing via phone to allow Zimbra to manage email. Zimbra also allows me to drag and drop any yahoo email over to my gmail files. It also allows me to turn off synchronizing on my personal files so all email is stored locally. It makes for quick email access - only files allowed to synchronize are the in, out, sent, and trash boxes. Turning off synchronizing on my junk files eliminates me having to deal with them on my computer. They are stored online and I occasionally access junk online and delete them (most email programs will delete them automatically after 30 days).
I don't allow my computer to remember passwords or store them on it. My passwords are stored on a memory stick. I use a common password body and vary it for non-essential access. Passwords are distinct for all sensitive access. I also have all sharing access turned off on my computer to help prevent hacking.
Hope this info helps.