Microsoft says it wants to do more to help protect your privacy. Now, they’re taking additional steps to make sure you know if someone has attempted to access your Microsoft account, Outlook.com e-mail account or your OneDrive cloud storage.
The company already lets users know if there’s suspicious activity surrounding their account or it it appears your account has been compromised by a third-party.
Now they are taking the extra step of letting you know just who attacked you. If it appears the attack is state-sponsored, which means done of behalf of a government, they’ll let you know.
The reasoning is that state-sponsored attacks are likely to be much more sophisticated and have much more staying power than shady individuals working out of a basement.
Microsoft wants to make sure you understand that just because you receive a notice, it doesn’t mean that your account has been compromised. Just that they have evidence that it was targeted and that you may want to take extra steps to secure your account such as changing your password or activating two-factor authentication.
It’s a good idea to activate two-factor authentication anyway, though many of you hate the idea of an extra step like having a code texted to you to access your account. You also want to make sure to use a strong password.
Keep your anti-virus and malware software up-to-date and also make sure you’ve installed the latest Windows security updates on your PC.
And, as always, use your common sense about suspicious e-mails and websites. It also doesn’t hurt to monitor your Microsoft account for recent activity. Just go to the Recent Activity page by clicking here.
Then click on See your recent activity.
You’ll need to enter an alternate e-mail address or a phone number where MS can text a security code.
Then enter the code that they send you.
You can see when your account was accessed, what browser was used and even a map of where it was accessed from.
If something there doesn’t look familiar, you know you’ve got a problem.