10 Tips To Secure Your Gmail And Google Account
We can’t deny the fact, that we are dependent on Google and its various productivity apps. From Gmail, to Drive, it contains too much of our personal as well as work-related data.
To easy access of information or online account, we keep them signed in on most of our devices. But have you thought a device without a right protection can lead to huge loss of yours.
Today cyber-criminals and hackers take advantage of any small mistake by the user or vulnerability to attack your account and do misleading actions.
So ask yourself:
What you do maintain your online privacy?
Do you use the Google account everywhere as a sign-in option?
Is your passwords strong enough?
Is your personal data on Drives or even local disk are secured from threats or spying programs?
These questions may haunt you, if you think about them seriously.
So, today, we will discuss about the 10 tips secure your Gmail and Google Account.
10 Tips To Secure Your Gmail And Google Account
Follow the steps carefully.
Do Account Security Checkup
This is the very first tip among the 10 tips secure your Gmail and Google Account. If you have not done security check of your Account, then do it now. Go to the My Account page. In the “Security Checkup” section, click on Take Action and follow the on-screen instructions to check your account security.
It will ask you to review your account settings, and confirm the same. You should do a security checkup of your Gmail or any online account regularly.
Update Your Account Recovery Options
Check that your account recovery options are up-to-date. So that if you forget your password or it is working no more, then you can recover your account with other options.
To confirm your Recovery options:
- Go To account recovery;
- Click on the “Sign in & Recovery” Tab;
- Confirm your recovery email and recovery Phone number, click “Yes, Confirm”;
- Also, check for other Verification methods to secure your account.
Enable 2-step verification
2-Step Verification makes your account more secure by adding an extra security layer. It asks users to add their phone number to send users one-time secure code to login to their account. Besides securing the account, it also makes sure that your account is linked to your Phone.
2-Step verification or 2 FA means, besides providing your password, you need to authenticate the account from the code sent to your phone number. This means no one can access your account without your permission or the correct code.
To enable 2-Step verification for your Google Account :
- Click on your Profile Icon, and select “Manage Your Account Settings”;
- Choose Security option from the left menu;
- Scroll to find “Signing in to Google” section, and click on 2-step verification; If its off, then you need to enable and set it up;
- Click on “Get Started” and follow the on-screen instructions to complete it.
Always use a strong password
Never use personal identifiable data as your password like name, nickname, birthdays or so. As such passwords can be easily guessed Do not share or send your password to anyone asking for it. Make sure to change your Google Account password after every 3-6 months.
The fact is stronger the password, makes your account hard to breach. Thus, security experts recommend using a password manager. Password managers are not only tools to generate strong passwords, but they have various features that can secure your online privacy. Like, vault to keep all your passwords safe at one place, and you just need to remember one master password to access them.
Although, there are various password managers, however, we recommend DashLane, which I am personally using since more than 2 years.
Check The Connected Apps and Device Logins
Now, to ease our access to Gmail or Google accounts, we usually connect it to various devices and third-party apps. Often, we forget to log-out to such devices, we are not using any more, if it is being used by someone else. If somehow the device gets compromised, then it is possible your account too get hacked or being misused.
This can be easily monitored under the Security Checkup of your Gmail or Google account.
- To do so, Go To Device Activity
- You will see a page showing devices you have logged in.
- To manage or to remove any device, Click on the three-vertical dots, there are 3 options : Sign Out, Find Phone and Don’t recognize this.
You can manage the device logins this way.
Secondly, To check which apps are connected to Your Account:
This is yet another thing which you should keep a regular check on.
- Go To Apps with access to your account Settings;
- Here you will see the third-party Apps with their permissions. To manage or remove access.
- Click on the App to view its details, and Click on “Remove Access”;
If the application seems harmful or unknown to you, you can click on the “Report this app” link.
Scan and Download any mail attachments before opening
It is worth to mention that, most of the cyber-criminals uses phishing email as the vector to drop payloads of the malware on the target device. Thus, users need to aware of scan tactics that are commonly used by cyber-crooks to infect the device. Most of the Ransomware, spyware, crypto-malware and Trojan threat are distributed by phishing email attachments.
Although, they appear to be legit like any invoice, job offers, some brand offers and so on. However, once you open the email, it either asks you to download some important attachment or visit the link to know more. Both of them are a trick to download the threat.
Although, Gmail runs its own virus scanner, so if you receive any suspicious email.
What Gmail scanner do:
When Gmail finds a known virus attached to an email that’s been sent to you, Gmail will reject the message and let the sender know.
If Gmail finds a virus in an attachment on an email that’s already in your inbox, you won’t be able to download the attachment.
However, to scan any document To do so, download (save) the attachment to your desktop. Place your cursor on the attachment and right click with your mouse. You will see the option of scanning the attachment with your antivirus program.
Never use third-party links to login
Do not let your password compromised by using third-party redirect page to login. If you feed your login credentials to any third-party/infected website, then your information could be misused. Always go directly to mail.google.com or accounts.google.com/login.
Be extra cautious while accessing your account from a public computer
Never click on save or remember password on the browser. Don’t forget to sign out of your account. At the top of the page, click on your profile icon, and then, select Sign out.
After that. clear the browsing history, clear forms, passwords, cache, and cookies from the browser. Also, you should clear browsing data on a regular basis. As our browsers store every traces of our online activity. This can act a huge tracking resource for the advertisers and unknown apps, this means your privacy is exposed. Thus, clean your browsers more often, to do this you can use a cleaning tool that will do it regularly.
Do a regular scan for viruses and malware
Run a full system scan on your computer with a trusted antivirus software at regular intervals or you can also schedule time for the scan feature provided within your Antivirus program. If the scan detects any suspicious programs or applications, remove them immediately.
Lastly, we recommend using a VPN app to protect your browsing, accounts and other online activity.
Privacy is your fundamental right and securing them is the rightful thing to do. Thus, I hope by following the above security tips you will be able to safeguard your Gmail and Google Account.