When I couldn’t use the MSN Hotmail sign in website correctly last week, I had feared the worst had happened. I was sure that I was entering my user name and password correctly, but it didn’t work. I use the account on a regular basis, so there was no way that I could have forgotten the password or user name. The only possible explanation was that someone else had gotten into my account and changed the password. I made the password long and mixed it with numbers and characters to make it hard to crack on purpose, but I guess this wasn’t enough. I sent a request for a password reset, and a link was sent to an alternate email address that I had on file.
I was lucky that none of the other information on my account was changed, or the password reset wouldn’t have worked. In order to make the account even more secure, I made a new, longer password with a different set of characters. I also enabled a two step verification process. In addition to having to enter a password on the login page, I would also have to enter a special code that would be sent to my phone. Since no one else has access to my phone, a simple password crack wouldn’t be enough to hijack my account. A hacker would have to physically walk up to me and steal the phone out of my hands.
The extra verification process does add a little extra time to me checking my emails from my computer, but it’s a small price to pay to make sure that no one besides me can get into my account. I know hackers will work to overcome this in the future, but for now they have been put at bay with this security measure.