My Gmail acct. hijacked to send spam
January 15, 2013 2:21 AM   Subscribe

Twice recently my Gmail acct. has been hijacked by someone who is sending spam emails to some, but not contacts --seems to be only recently emailed (by me) people. The spam is an ad, as seen on Fox News for Raspberry drops weight loss aid. How do the spammers access my Gmail account? Could it be through my brand new Android cell phone? I am unaware of any other problems on my (Macbook) home computer. I have a secure WiFi router at home. No evidence malware or virus. I've changed my Gmail password, FWIW. Any suggestions on how/where to find a way from this happening again?
posted by NorthCoastCafe to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Enable two factor authentication

Use strong passwords. Don't use the same password for gmail as any other account. Change your passwords for every account you have, if your gmail account gets hacked.
posted by empath at 2:24 AM on January 15, 2013 [5 favorites]

Are the messages showing up in your Sent folder?
If not, then it may be a Joe Job, where your account itself is safe and the spammer is just using your address in the "From" field. In that case, there's not a whole lot you can do about it.
posted by jozxyqk at 2:40 AM on January 15, 2013 [4 favorites]

Also, when it happens, check your account activity (link on the bottom right of gmail pages). This will show you what devices accessed the account. Check that against the time the spam is sent - this will tell you whether it's the phone, the home computer, or someone accessing the account from somewhere else. If there's no activity, most likely to be the Joe Job.
posted by monkey closet at 2:47 AM on January 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

Yeah, this sounds like something you cannot prevent because a spammer is sending messages from an entirely different account and making his messages look like they came from your account even though you (and your actual account) had nothing to do with them. It's like sending someone a letter with a fake return address.
posted by pracowity at 3:41 AM on January 15, 2013

If it is a Joe Job, how did the sender obtain the OP's resent sendees list?
posted by beagle at 5:10 AM on January 15, 2013 [2 favorites]

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