What does 'hacked account' mean? 'Hacking' is an overused term, often used in place of 'password-guessing'.
When someone says their account has been 'hacked' it generally means that someone else has gained access to their account without their knowledge or permission. The hacker may be doing this as a prank or for more malicious reasons.
How does an account get hacked? Your account is more likely to be hacked if one or more of the following are true:
- Your account has a weak password that is easy to guess
- You share your password with someone else
- You share a computer and forget to sign out of your account before leaving the computer
What to do
- DON'T share your password with anyone.
- Change your password - If you believe your username account has been compromised or "hacked", change your password immediately. If you can't sign in because your password has been changed, use the "forgot your password" feature to email yourself a link to reset the password.
- Use a secure password - The best way to avoid the frustration and embarrassment of having your account hacked is to use a secure password and never ever tell anyone what it is. A secure password should use a combination of UPPER and lowercase letters, numbers, and non-alphanumeric characters such as %, _, &, $, etc. Also, change your password periodically just to be on the safe side.
- Sign out of your account before you walk away from the computer. Who knows what your little brother will do when you're not looking.