With cyberattacks on the rise around the world, the need to keep your online accounts secure is more urgent than ever.
This is especially true for your Microsoft account, which you use to sign in to Outlook and Windows PCs.
How to lock your Microsoft account
Two-factor authentication (2FA), also known as two-step authentication or two-step verification, is a means of protecting online accounts.
Whenever you need to log into a website, you enter your normal password – this is the first “factor” used to authenticate your identity.
Then a one time password (OTP) will be sent to your phone or email and this OTP will be used on the next page to access your account.
Instead of an OTP, your registration may require you to solve a CAPTCHA or confirm a push notification.
It’s an extra layer of security that ensures cyber criminals can’t access your account even if they have your username and password.
To enable 2FA on your Microsoft account, go to Your Microsoft account page online, log in and click security.
Go to Advanced security options and then Additional security before clicking Turn on under Two-Step Verification.
Use a strong password
Using a strong password is of paramount importance if you want to protect your account from hackers.
The password you use for your Microsoft account should also be unique — meaning you don’t just use it for other accounts.
In an ideal world, it must be at least eight characters long and contain a combination of letters and numbers.
It should also be memorable and not use words or strings of numbers that can be guessed from public data about you, such as B. Your birthday or your favorite soccer team (which can probably be found on your social media profile).
Your best bet is to use a password manager that can generate passwords from random strings of letters and numbers, which it stores in a secure database so you don’t have to remember them.
Check if your account has been compromised
You should also check if your account has already been compromised.
You can keep doing this HaveIBeenPwned.com.
This tracks major password/login leaks and lets you compare your email address or phone number to it.
It’s a great way to see if you’ve been involved in any major hacks, although it doesn’t keep track of every leak that has ever taken place.
Password managers like 1Password and Apple’s iCloud Keychain offer a similar service.
Why you should lock your account
Fraud is on the rise in the UK, with fraudsters responsible for more than a third of all crime, according to figures published last year.
An estimated five million cases of fraud occurred in 2021 through June – 32 percent more than in the previous year.
That accounted for 39.4 percent of the 12.7 million crimes recorded, according to a report by the Bureau of National Statistics.
According to Labor’s analysis of official figures, phone fraud rose by 82 percent, while online shopping fraud increased by a third.
And the National Cyber Security Center blocked 700,000 phishing campaigns in the last year alone.
Phishing scams use fake emails, texts, or websites to trick victims into entering their personal information.
Typically, scammers are after usernames and passwords for services like Microsoft or Facebook.
In other news, the mystery surrounding Stonehenge’s construction by prehistoric Britons has finally been solved after research confirmed the monument as a Old solar calendar.
In other news, the iPhone’s virtual assistant, Siri, is getting a new, “gender neutral” voice.
A British woman has told of their horror after scammers used photos of a ‘silver fox’ politician to swindle her out of £80,000.
And the Norfolk County Council sues Apple about what it says was misleading information about iPhone sales.
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https://www.thesun.ie/tech/8451183/warning-lock-microsoft-outlook-accounts-down-now/ Warning to suspend Microsoft and Outlook accounts NOW – even if you hardly use them