👍 #782 – Has a Hacker Really Hacked My Email Account?

I've picked Has a Hacker Really Hacked My Email Account? as the featured article this week because the scenario it outlines continues to happen frequently, and many people are concerned that the claims in the email might be true.

The scenario is simple, with some variations: the spammer claims to have access to your account or computer, they may claim to have recorded you watching illicit materials online, they may even include one of your passwords in their message. The upshot is that they'll do something bad unless you pay some sort of ransom.


Also this week:

System Restore can use a fair amount of disk space. It doesn't have to.

The number of people who lose their Outlook.com / Hotmail / Microsoft account is frightening. It's frustrating to me because it's so preventable.

"NAS" is a buzzword (or rather, acronym -- pronounce it "nas") you might hear from time to time. They're handy for a variety of reasons, but in some ways you might already have one. Smile

Have a great week!



Has a Hacker Really Hacked My Email Account?

Today, I received this lovely email. While I think it is complete BS and I certainly have no intention on taking any action on it, it *does* look like it was sent from my account, i.e., it appears that someone can send emails impersonating me. Do you have any advice what I should do about this?


The questionable email message that this person was reporting describes how this person's account had been hacked, how changing the password wouldn't help, and that it was being held for ransom to be paid in Bitcoin. And, indeed, it appeared to be “From:” this person's email address.

Variations of this scam even include a password — a password that you've actually used.

Even so, “complete BS” is very accurate.

Though, if there is a password, then there is one thing you should do.

Continue Reading: Has a Hacker Really Hacked My Email Account?

Ask Leo! On YouTube

Ask Leo! on YouTube

I've been posting all the Ask Leo! narration videos on YouTube for some time. I've recently begun to post some short takes, how-to's, and even the occasional opinion piece there as well.

While most make it into articles that are then mentioned here in the newsletter, not all are. And even if they are, they'll generally show up on YouTube first.

If video's your thing, or you're just curious what I'm up to, visit the Ask Leo! YouTube channel, and hit that YouTube subscribe button.

This Week's Articles

How To Reduce System Restore Disk Space Usage

Is there any way to make System Restore use less space if we would like to have the benefit of a restore, but not use up all our space? I just saved half my hard drive by turning System Restore off.

Yes, we can adjust the amount of disk space System Restore will use.

But that adjustment comes at a price.

Continue Reading: How To Reduce System Restore Disk Space Usage

How Do I Get into My Outlook.com Account If I Don't Have the Recovery Phone or Email?

I've forgotten my Hotmail password, and I no longer have access to the phone number I set up on the account when I created it years ago. What do I do?

I get so many variations of this question.

The most common scenario is travel. If there's something “different” about your attempt to sign in — and being in a different country qualifies — Microsoft now often requires that even if you know your password, you must provide additional security confirmation. Usually, that's a code sent to your phone or alternate email address.

I cannot stress this enough:

It is critical that you keep your recovery information up to date.

Not doing so is by far the fastest way to lose access to your accountforever — should something go wrong. It's also a way to end up unable to access your email while traveling.

While many feel that the approach is somewhat ham-handed on Microsoft's part, the reality is they're fighting an incredibly difficult problem: account theft.

I'll review the steps I believe you need to take, and explain why this is happening.

Continue Reading: How Do I Get into My Outlook.com Account If I Don't Have the Recovery Phone or Email?

What's a NAS? How Do I Set One Up?

I have been reading about NAS devices lately. I like the idea of using one and would like to deploy one on my network. I have an external drive that I would like to convert to a NAS device. I was wondering if this was possible to do or not? Would I have to buy a NAS enclosure or something else?

NAS stands for “Network Attached Storage”. It's a device whose primary function is to provide storage in the form of disk space — often lots of disk space — to other computers on a network.

I was running a dedicated NAS for a while, but then took it down. Once I understood what it really was, I decided I didn't need another one.

Continue Reading: What's a NAS? How Do I Set One Up?

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Posted: November 12, 2019 in: 2019
Shortlink: https://newsletter.askleo.com/8230
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