What Should I Do If My Amazon Account Was Hacked
Amazon is currently housing close to 250 million active users, making them one of the largest e-commerce channels in the world. That’s why security flaws from this name mean so much (like the recent 80,000 Kindle usernames and passwords that were leaked because of a security breach that Amazon didn’t pay attention to).
So any good hacker would naturally want to target such a lucrative wellspring of potential victims, and that’s why you need to stay two steps ahead of the game. Take these necessary precautions to screen yourself from hacking attempts.
Think it’s too late? Then first implement these smart tips from the pros to regain control of your Amazon account. Then you can safeguard your privacy to make sure hacks like this never happen again.
Phase One: Get Them Out
In this phase of your Amazon account recovery mission, you are going to kick out the hackers and regain control of your account. The best way to do this is changing your password. If you can still access your Amazon account, then go to the Login & Security Settings section from your Amazon homepage.
Click on “Login & Security Settings”.
You’ll see several sections (that we’ll address shortly), including Password. Simply hit Edit, and you can choose a new password to regain control over your Amazon account.
Click on the “Edit” button in the “Password” row.
Enter your current password and a new password. Choose a complex password, with lower case letters, upper case letters and digits.
Giving yourself a strong password is one of the best ways to prevent hacks in the future. If the hacker can’t easily guess your password or set an algorithm to figure it out, they’ll likely just move on to an easier target.
A good password is one that won’t be readily guessed by anyone who can find out information about you, has a nice mix of characters, numbers, and upper and lower case letters, and isn’t generally a single word you could look up in the dictionary.
Phase Two: Verify the Other Listed Account Information
Once you’ve entered and saved your new password, you can verify that the rest of the information listed on your Amazon account is accurate. On the same Login & Security Settings page, you’ll find several sections containing details about you such as your name, email address, and phone number.
Look at each of these sections carefully to check that nothing has been added or changed. Even a small change in your email address, for example, could send all of your Amazon account notifications over to another person without you even realizing it. If anything has been changed or added, remedy the situation immediately.
Phase Three: Get Two-Step Verification
Two-step verification requires a user to enter a randomly-generated access code that is sent to your mobile device each time login is attempted. This way, only someone who has your phone will be able to log into your account.
Press “Get Started” to activate “Two Factor Notification”
Enable two-step verification by going to that same Login & Security Settings page, clicking on Advanced Security Settings (the section all the way at the bottom), and hitting the orange Get Started button next to Two-Step Verification.
Phase Four: Review Your Account Activity
One of the main purposes for hacking an Amazon account is to buy things on someone else’s tab. For this reason, it’s important to check your account activity as soon as you suspect a breach. This can be done by going to the Your Orders section of the Your Account page.
Check your order history to make sure nothing was ordered under your name.
If you see purchases that you didn’t make on your Orders page, get in touch with both the credit card company attached to your Amazon account and Amazon’s customer service promptly to dispute the charges. Note: Kindle purchases need to be checked separately as they are not listed in the same Orders section as the regular Amazon purchases.
Phase Five: Check Your Other Accounts
It’s unlikely that a hacker will hack into one of your accounts alone. Generally speaking, when a hack is implemented, the cyber criminal will make their way across as many of your online accounts as possible, threatening a Facebook hacked account and even others before being stopped. The way they manage this is because of a silly mistake that most of the people online make: sharing passwords from one account to the next. This is by far the biggest help you can give to a hacker, so do yourself a favor and don’t do it!
Choose unique passwords for each of your online accounts, and don’t store them in an easily accessible folder or area of your other online accounts.
Phase Six: Use Antivirus Software
Antivirus software checks your device for any unfamiliar files, unwelcome guests, or unusual activity. Oftentimes, a hacker will deposit a malicious code or software onto your computer known as malware. This is like a virus that spreads through the device, capturing valuable information such as passwords, bank account numbers, and other private details that can be used by the hackers later for a profit. Run antivirus software to detect any such infection on your device.
A much more complicated situation is when you can no longer get into your Amazon account. If this happens, there are several steps to take pronto:
- See if you can log into your email account associated with the Amazon one. Change the password to your email account right away so you don’t lose control over that account as well.
- If you can’t sign into your Gmail account, click here. Alternatively, use this guide to regain control of your hacked Yahoo account.
- Contact Amazon’s customer service (US: +1 206-266-2992, or do a Google search for their international numbers), and tell them you cannot access your account.
No matter what else you do, the final step in securing your online accounts is getting LogDog. This free tool monitors your online accounts, alerting you if and when sensitive information is saved that could compromise your security. LogDog is available for Android devices of every type and you can also download the iOS version here.