Email is the most preferred way of communication now a days. It offers flexibility, speed and confirmation. There is a lot of personal information connected to every email account. It is very important for every email user to keep the account safe. Here is the list of 20 precautions to follow and keep the email account out of the hackers / spammers / scammers reach.
Periodically change your email password (once in 3 months) and do not share it with anyone.
If you have ticked/selected “Keep Me Logged On” while logging in your email account, always log out after your session is over, otherwise other people using the same computer will have straight access to your account.
Never open and / or download any attachment if you are not expecting one. PDF attachments can be really harmful. Scan all attachments with your antivirus software before downloading.
All the information emails informing you about lottery winnings / hereditary gains / Western Union Money Transfer / FBI fund transfers or else are fake and are aimed to gather your information. Do not respond to such emails. If possible, block them.
All the emails through Craigslist / Kijiji and other similar websites responding to any of your ads in a doubtful manner are fake and again, aimed at gathering your information. One of the response example is “I am out of town, I wish to buy your item. I will send you money and add shipping amount to it. Can you ship it to my given address?” This is all fake.
Your financial institution(s) will never ask your account details through an email. If you receive any email asking your financial details and claims that it is sent from your financial institution, never send your details. Forward that email to your financial institution so that they can take action.
Paypal always refers you with your name. Never respond to the (Paypal) emails that do not refer you by your name. Forward that email to email@example.com and inform them.
Never click on a link that you are not expecting.
Do not respond to an email that is not written in the language you understand. If you want, search for Google translation tool and copy paste the matter to find out exactly what is written. Keep in mind that translation will give you an idea not the exact understanding.
Always use a current antivirus software, run it manually every few weeks and keep a back up if possible.
Do not give out your email in case you can manage without giving it out.
Do not subscribe to any service that is not useful to you for a long run.
If you are sending an email to more than one person, do not use ‘cc’. Instead, use ‘bcc’ option. It will not disclose the email addresses to all the group you are sending.
If you register a domain name, always register it ‘private’ not ‘public’
Any email that starts with “RE:………..” and you are not expecting a reply, is probably fake and do not open it. Even if you open, do not click on any link and do not respond.
Always use spam filter to auto identify and separate spam emails. Just read the ‘from’ and ‘subject’ line and delete the emails without even opening them.
Do not use automatic reply if you don’t have to. If possible use it on Intranet setting and not on open public email domains.
Emails offering you a part time job of money collection and transfer are 100% fraud. Do not respond to those emails and inform the legal authorities as they may like to know more about such frauds.
It is a good idea to keep 2 email accounts.
Last but not least, if you have kids or close associates, make them aware about these precautions!