POSTED: Friday, July 13, 2012 - 3:01pm
UPDATED: Friday, July 13, 2012 - 4:21pm
Tyler, TX (KETK) — Yahoo has confirmed hackers have stolen about 450,000 email addresses and passwords and posted that information online.
That means you could see more phishing scams and viral emails in your inbox this summer.
Cyber criminals love getting their hands on email accounts and passwords. It makes it easier for them to pull off scams. Computer experts at Exceptional Technology Solutions in Tyler TX tell us it all comes down to identity theft.
Cyber criminals use email addresses and passwords to gain access to financial accounts, social networks, and other personal information. The Vice President and General Manager of Exceptional Technology Solutions Tony DeGonia says, "they can do a great deal of harm, open new accounts for utilities, credit cards, we've even see folks buying RVs."
Yahoo is just the latest major website to fall victim to a cyber attack. Recently the business social network work Linkedin and the dating site E-harmony were also hacked. We asked the folks at ETS 'what can a criminal get from information like someone's online resume and dating interests?'. Joe Reeves the Director of Operations at ETS said "they're looking for information, where you work, how long you've worked there, your families names."
Using that information criminals can try to steal your identity. Reeves says " They more information they gather... once they start launching those attacks the more successful they are. Like tony was saying they can open up credit cards in your name, and all of a sudden you have a 247,000 dollar RV in your name."
If you're worried your account was hacked the first thing you need to do is change your password. ETS also says make sure you don't click on any link that comes in your emails. For example, if you get an alert from your bank go directly to the bank's website because an email link could be a phishing scam.
If you'd like more information about security. You can sign up for an information security web course with the folks at Exceptional Technology Solutions, LLC.