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Can you imagine how much data someone could steal if they hacked into your Gmail account? Better that you don’t find out. Instead of leaving your emails vulnerable, take these quick and easy steps to secure your account right now.

1. Access your security settings. Log into Gmail, click your profile photo at the top right of the screen, and select My Account to get to your dashboard. Under Sign-In & Security, click on Signing in to Google.

2. Set a new strong password. You absolutely do NOT want a weak password for your Gmail account. Check out these common password mistakes 7 Password Mistakes That Will Likely Get You Hacked 7 Password Mistakes That Will Likely Get You Hacked The worst passwords of 2015 have been released, and they're quite worrying. But they show that it's absolutely critical to strengthen your weak passwords, with just a few simple tweaks. Read More and make sure you avoid all of them. Instead, create an unbreakable password 6 Tips For Creating An Unbreakable Password That You Can Remember 6 Tips For Creating An Unbreakable Password That You Can Remember If your passwords are not unique and unbreakable, you might as well open the front door and invite the robbers in for lunch. Read More .

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To do this, under Password & Sign-In Method, click Password. Enter your current password, then enter your new password, and confirm.

3. Enable two-step verification. Sometimes called two-factor authentication What Is Two-Factor Authentication, And Why You Should Use It What Is Two-Factor Authentication, And Why You Should Use It Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a security method that requires two different ways of proving your identity. It is commonly used in everyday life. For example paying with a credit card not only requires the card,... Read More , two-step verification just means that you’ll need a password AND another identifier to access your account. In this case, your physical smartphone.

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To set it up, under Password & Sign-In Method, click 2-Step Verification. When prompted, enter your mobile phone number. You’ll receive a text message with a code — enter it when prompted.

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From now on, whenever you log into your account, you’ll receive a code from Gmail on your phone. That way if someone tries to hack into your account, they won’t be able to since they don’t have your phone.

That’s it! Done.

If you really want to be secure, however, you may want to consider migrating away from Gmail and using a safer alternative email service The Best Free Email Accounts You Need to Consider The Best Free Email Accounts You Need to Consider Everyone knows about Gmail. If you think that's the best free email account out there, you're underestimating all the other services. You have options and we have the details. Read More like ProtonMail or GMX. But for most people, these three steps should be enough.

Got any other Gmail security tips you want to share with us? We’d love to hear them. Please post them in a comment down below!

  1. Gene Baker
    June 15, 2016 at 5:07 pm

    This article mentions Gmail but isn't this password your Google password as well?

    • Joel Lee
      June 19, 2016 at 3:46 am

      Yes Gene, this actually does apply to the entire Google account. :)

  2. Christopher Walter
    June 15, 2016 at 2:06 pm

    I include blank spaces in pass words when I can in a password.

    • Joel Lee
      June 19, 2016 at 3:45 am

      Ha, that kinda makes me cringe but I suppose there's nothing wrong with that. :)

  3. Robert
    June 15, 2016 at 12:01 pm

    What if a user does not have a smartphone to use for Step Verification?

    • Nick Allon
      June 15, 2016 at 12:10 pm

      use a simple mobile phone, which can receive an SMS

      • fcd76218
        June 16, 2016 at 3:53 pm

        As shocking and incomprehensible as it may be, not everyone has/uses a mobile phone. I am one of those people. :-)

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