Tips to Find Unauthorized Activity on Your Email Account

Find Unauthorized Activity on Your EmailDo you suspect that your email account is under attack? Do you want to maintain the security of your email account and make it 100 percent hack proof? Well, Some times our email account might have got hacked and we may not be aware of that. We may believe that our email account is safe, but in reality our private and confidential information may be falling into the hands of a third person.

In this post, I will you will find information on how to find unauthorized activity on your email account if any and how to stop them.

Signs of Unauthorized Activity on an Email Account:

  1. Your new emails are marked as Read even if you’ve not read them.

  2. Your emails are moved to Trash or even permanently deleted without your notice.

  3. Your emails are being forwarded to a third party email address (check your settings-> forwarding).

  4. Your secondary email address or mobile number is changed.

If you come across any of the above activities on your email account, then it is a clear indication that your email account is hacked.

Additional Security Features in Gmail:

Gmail provides an additional security feature to protect your email account through the means of IP address logging. That is, Gmail records your IP address every time you log in to your Gmail account. So, if a third party gets access to your account then even his/her IP is also recorded. To see a list of recorded IP address, scroll down to the bottom of your Gmail account and you’ll see something like this.

Gmail - Last account activity

You can see from the above figure that Gmail shows the IP address of last login (last account activity). You can click on Details to see the IP address of your last 5 activities. If you find that the IP listed in the logs doesn’t belong to you, then there are chances of unauthorized activity.

Steps to Stop the Unauthorized Activity:

If you feel/suspect that your account is hacked, then you must immediately take the actions mentioned below:

    1. Change your Password

    2. Change your security question.

    3. Remove any third party email address (if any) to which your account is set to forward emails.

    4. Make sure that you can access the email account of your secondary email address.

    5. Also change your secondary email password and security question.

This ensures that your account is safe from future attacks. But I strongly recommend that you read my other post on How to protect your email account? I hope you liked this post. Please pass your comments. :)

31 Comments

  1. Eduardo
    May 28, 2009 at 5:59 PM

    What about windows seven?
    Are you developing something to activate it already?
    Thank you a lot for the Windows Vista Activator, I have installed the Vista SP2 and it’s still working here.
    Thank you again!


  2. Shoki
    June 2, 2009 at 5:16 AM

    hi Sir

    first of all thanks for this helpful site.
    i have tried the above trick and found the IP of my machine through gmail but when i run “IPCONFIG” on my system…. i found a different IP. i want to know how’s that possible?

    here are example (What’s happened with me)

    IP i got through GMail

    1) 88.106.55.44
    2) 88.106.25.244
    3) 88.106.30.60
    4) 88.106.155.78
    5) 88.106.145.4

    i have used only one system to login GMail but IP showns are Different. Last Two parts are not the same.

    IP i got through “IPCONFIG”

    180.189.8.3

    IP I got through “IPCONFIG” doesn’t match with even a single instance of IPs shown by GMail.

    Sir G I’m Confused why this happens?

    Thanks


    • Srikanth
      June 2, 2009 at 5:34 AM

      @ Shoki

      To check the correct IP of your computer visit http://www.whatismyip.com/ and you’ll see your IP. Compare this IP with the list shown by Gmail. The first two sets of IP should match ie: xxx.xxx.


  3. Shoki
    June 2, 2009 at 5:06 PM

    Thanx for replying ……..
    what why should i use any site to know my IP?
    Is “IPCONFIG” command shows wrong IP? Till now i have learnt that IPCONFIG shows the IP of your Pc. so, i’m confuesed where thing go wrong?

    ONE MORE QUESTION

    U said that only First two sets i.e: xxx.xxx matched. why not complete IP match?


    • Srikanth
      June 7, 2009 at 6:25 AM

      @ Shoki

      IP config doesn’t show the wrong IP address, but shows only your IPv4 address, subnet mask and default gateway. It’ doesn’t show up your IP.


  4. Shoki
    June 2, 2009 at 7:12 PM

    Thanks Sir (Srikanth)

    for the above link i got my IP and its first two set i.e xx.xx. matches with what gmail shown to me as my IP address why it does not match with IP address given by IPCONFIG IPCONFIG also shows IP address of System.

    why last two sets verified frequently?


  5. zaza
    June 3, 2009 at 12:02 AM

    the ip that gmail detect, is ur internet protocol. the ip of ur internet at that moment
    ip config gives u ip for ur pc


  6. kevin
    June 19, 2009 at 8:52 PM

    couple of months back my yahoo mail has been hacked, if i want to reset the password i need to give my personal info that i enterd at the time of registration, but i dont remember what i have given at that time coz its been more than 5years back i have created that acount, i got really frustrated with this yahoo, i have no clue how to retrive my password back, is there some one who could help me out in this . Mr.Srikanth do u have any clue bot it. i guess the hacker have changed all the personal details so that i cant get back my account, hmmmm, disgusting, actually they are not hackers, but they are crackers.. . .Thankx in advance :)


    • Srikanth
      June 22, 2009 at 8:10 AM

      @ kevin

      Sorry, it’s not possible to retrieve your account unless you remember your personal details.


  7. Marc
    July 7, 2009 at 10:25 AM

    Is there any way to check on recent Gmail activity beyond the past 5 most recent events.

    Thanks


    • Srikanth
      July 8, 2009 at 10:26 PM

      @ Marc

      No it’s not possible.


  8. ruchika
    September 20, 2009 at 7:04 PM

    how can we have details of opening the gmail account for last 4 days?


  9. ruchika
    September 20, 2009 at 7:07 PM

    how can we know the browsing history for with last 4 days on gmail?


  10. CT
    October 5, 2009 at 11:34 PM

    @ kevin

    Sorry, it’s not possible to retrieve your account unless you remember your personal details.


  11. robot
    January 15, 2010 at 8:26 PM

    I changed my new security question, but two security question(older) still exist. Please tell me how to delete them. Thank you so much.


  12. Vibhu
    January 28, 2010 at 1:26 PM

    HEY THANKS FOR THE INFO…….
    I HAVE HEARD THAT THERE IS A SOFTWARE THAT CAN DETECT IF UR EMAIL ID IS BEING HACKED…. AND THE PLUS POINT IS IT DOESNT ALLOWS TO HACK ANYONE…… DOES ANYONE KNOWS ABOUT IT?????
    IF YES KINDLY MAIL ME THE DETAILS ON coolvibhu123@yahoo.co.in

    AND IF ANYONE CAN HELP ME WITH GOOD INSTITUTES WHICH OFFER COURSES IN ETHICAL HACKING…..
    THANK U
    :)


  13. NEGI58@GMAIL.COM
    January 31, 2010 at 10:16 PM

    hi
    SHRIKANT VERY-VERY THANKS TO PUBLISHING THIS TYPE OF HELP. I AM VERY HAPPY TO SEE YOUR WEBSITE.PLZ TELL WHAT IS DNS SERVER.
    WHEN I APPLY THIS COMMAND IN MY DOS PROMPT.I GOT DNS SERVER IP ADDRESS LIKE AS 212.231.32.33 WHAT IS THIS.IS IT INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDER DNS?
    PLZ TELL ME? AM I RIGHT OR WRONG?
    AND EXPLAIN BRIEFLY HOW IT WORKS.


  14. Mr. Boombastick
    February 6, 2010 at 6:43 AM

    I hope you can help me and my girl friend. We are going crazy dealing with this issue. Someone broke into my girl friend’s computer recently and stole some pictures. He is blackmailing her. He wants her to take pictures of herself and keep sending to him. Otherwise he would forward the pictures he stole to news media. She has filed a report with police and cyber crime unit in her country.

    However, she was told by the cyber crime unit that it wouldn’t be easy to find him; he could have used a public computer, or got online outside, etc. The hacker seems to be somewhat of a computer expert. He dared her to go to police saying he was not stupid to be caught.

    Can you please give me some tips that I can share with my girl friend, which she can pass on to the cyber crime unit in the police? Her country is not exactly known to be technically advanced although they have a dedicated division for cyber crime.

    Please help us.


    • Srikanth
      February 12, 2010 at 1:50 PM

      @ Mr. Boombastick

      It’s hard to give any remedies for your situation since I have too little knowledge of what really happened. However I suggest that you keep your computer safe from any kind of future attacks. Refer the following post for tips on maintaining your computer security

      10 Tips for a Total Online Security


  15. crs
    May 21, 2010 at 3:34 PM

    MY EMAIL WAS HACKED AND GMAIL SHOWED ME THE IP AND LOCATION. WHAT CAN I DO NEXT. I WANT TO FURTHER INVESTIGATE.

    ALSO I NOTICED THAT APRIL 28TH WAS THE DAY THEY HACKED ME, I LOGGED IN ONCE THAT DAY AND I SIGNED UP FROM USTREAM AND GOT MAIL FROM USTREAM ONLY ON THAT DAY. IS THERE A POSSIBLE LINK?


    • Srikanth
      May 29, 2010 at 6:41 PM

      @ crs

      If you still have the access to your account, then you need to change your password, security question and the secondary email associated with it. This protects your account from future attacks.


  16. pattie farm
    July 2, 2010 at 2:22 AM

    I get into the front page of my email accounts but at times this week am having problems getting to go past the home page into the actual emails. Have I been hacked or what is happening to me?

    Pattie


  17. kabir
    August 31, 2010 at 8:37 PM

    Dear Sir ji,,,

    is there any one who help me out .here is the problem i faced….

    i have starated website business with my partner and we got success in that but i have faith in my friend so i submit all money to his account .and as we started our company in we opend as e-mail account in yahoo and gmail …
    in mean time i am not getting busisness so now my partner my friend stated barking with me…now he Change yahoo and gmail password and not giveing money…..
    help i need is that is any body crack the password for me then i ll give him or her gud amount of money…if any one can hhelp me then plz write me on kabir22dave@gmail.com

    Thanks
    Kabir


  18. ann
    September 14, 2010 at 8:29 PM

    hi sri, i do know that gmail puts latest account activity and monitors the last 5 ip addresses who used the email account, does yahoo have this feature too?
    i think someone is hacking into my account, reading my emails.
    thanks


    • Srikanth
      September 17, 2010 at 1:43 PM

      @ ann

      No, Yahoo doesn’t have this feature of IP logging.


  19. Mo
    June 30, 2011 at 9:17 PM

    @Ann & @Srikanth

    Take a look at:
    https://edit.yahoo.com/config/eval_profile

    at “Sign-In and Security” you can find “View your recent login activity”. You can see the location and also the IP address

    Also the following option would be useful
    “Change sign-in settings”
    Currently you are signed out every: 1 day
    By default it is 2weeks but you can reduce it to 1 day


  20. Kia Mclaney
    July 23, 2011 at 3:03 AM

    Hey there, Just read this article about OJ. Paul: an IP location database can be used to generate powerful and accurate results. Bloggers and content managers use this facility to alter content, all based on demographic preferences of online visitors. As a result, the website likeability factor increases, without leveraging the necessity of manually checking in every user profile… Isn’t he reason?.


  21. Helen
    October 25, 2012 at 2:18 PM

    Hi there, is it possible for someone to hack into my email account/read my emails without showing up on login activity (no suspicious IP address on the login history)? Thank you!


    • Srikanth
      October 29, 2012 at 11:50 AM

      It is possible to hide the real IP address that is logged using a proxy, but not possible to stop the recording process itself!


  22. renuka
    February 9, 2013 at 12:02 PM

    em nt able to access my account and use the recovery options what should i do ?


  23. Vijendra kumar
    January 7, 2014 at 12:52 PM

    Problem is that one of my girlfriend brother access her mail without login her email id he directly get her email on own mobile when she send mail to me even i checked her yahoo mail there security is ok i put my mobile no for any update and used my id as a secondary emai id and almost everything is despite it is happening. she told me that her brother saying he used avast security .even he used that security so how can this possible to read someone personal sms to directly on his mpbile plz suggest me what should i do.


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