Hackers need Google accounts; give you that security check now

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Here’s a nightmare scenario: You’re enjoying your hard-earned summer vacation when you realize phone or laptop gone, missing.

Aside from the cost of replacing it, you may have lost years of photos and other files – and faced some pretty dire consequences.

The only place you don’t want someone to snoop is in your mailbox. Do not create folders with names such as “medical documents” or “tax information”.

Your Google Account is one of the most important things on your devices, especially if you use Gmail. There are easy ways to make sure your stuff doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.

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How detailed is data tracking?

Google tracking is mostly for its benefit, or for companies that pay big bucks to show you ads based on your data.

The Google Web home page is displayed on the product in the store.

The Google Web home page is displayed on the product in the store.
(REUTERS/Neil Hall)

Speaking of which, have you ever looked up your name on the internet and seen how many data broker sites your information is circulating? I’m getting so many requests for steps to remove this information that I’ve started a new series on my website called Denial Tuesday. Each week we provide instructions on how to remove your profile from these sites.

You can get your privacy back a bit on sites like BeenVerified, PeopleFinders, SpyFly, and ZabaSearch.

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You may not realize how detailed this information becomes. Not only does the advertiser know that you’re a mom of three from Florida or a CMO based in Austin. Your profile includes your financial capabilities, interests, political affiliations, shopping preferences, and more.

I wanted to learn more about it, so I sat down with the CTO of advertising and did a podcast.

After all, data tracking is big business. How big? Alphabet, the parent company of Google, makes about $420,000 every year. minute. Crazy, right? Not all money comes from advertisingbut it’s the most important piece of the pie.

Luckily, some Google tracking tools can help you.

Exclusive temporary offer: As a special thanks to my readers, I am giving you a free guide for Windows or Mac full of tips, tricks and great downloads. Get your free guide for Windows or Mac now at my Komando.com/FreeGuides website.

Check your account activity

I talk to many people who have been scammed and in almost all cases they didn’t realize something was wrong until it was too late. A friend holds out his hand to ask: “Hey, what’s with the weird Facebook post??”, or you see emails in your inbox that you didn’t send. Or, even worse, you notice strange payments from your credit card or receive a loan notice in your name.

However, there are ways to spot bad actors before they do too much damage. You know, this tip also works for detecting spies. Is a friend or family member digging into your Google or Gmail account? Here’s the way to find out.

  • Go to google.com/devices. Sign in to your account if you haven’t already.
  • Here you will see a list of devices. These are the computers, smartphones, and tablets you are currently signed in to or have been signing in to in the last 28 days.

You will see the same device multiple times because every session (or every time you logged in) is recorded. Nothing to worry about.

Along with your current sessions, you can also see devices that have not been used for a long time, like an old phone or computer you no longer use. You can log out of these devices remotely.

  • Just click on the one you want and then exit. This will completely remove access to your Google account from the device.

You can also use this page to search for some connected devices such as Android phones. It’s comfortable.

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  • Press devicethen select find device, and you will be taken to the Google “Find my device” page.

What happens if you see a computer, phone, tablet, or device that you don’t recognize?

  • Click on the device and select Do you not recognize something? Or exit. Again, this will log out the device remotely.

Next, you need to secure your account. It’s time to change your password to make sure whoever is logged in can’t do it again. Do not reuse an old password or choose a password that is easy to guess. It’s time to pull out all the stops.

computer keyboard

computer keyboard
(iStock)

Remembering strong passwords is difficult, so a password manager is the best choice. The nice thing is that these programs can do more than remember your logins.

Do you want your dead grandmother to read you a fairy tale? If Amazon’s new Alexa AI feature comes to life, you’ll be able to clone dead voices. Also, hackers are taking over hot tubs, Anna Sorokina is selling NFTs, and the FBI is warning about a crypto scam on LinkedIn. Oh, and you won’t believe how much money the big tech companies are making per minute.

Watch my podcast “Kim Commando Today” on Apple, Google Podcasts, Spotifyor your favorite podcast player.

Just look up my last name “Commando”.

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What questions do you have about the digital lifestyle? Call Kim’s national radio broadcast. You can listen or watch the Kim Commando show on your phone, tablet, TV or computer.

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Find out about all the latest technologies at The Kim Commando Show, the nation’s largest weekend radio talk show. Kim takes calls and gives advice on today’s digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data breaches. Her daily tips, free newsletters and more can be found on her website at Komando.com.