EMERGENCY Recovery of your Yahoo Account

November 27, 2008

EMERGENCY Recovery of your Yahoo Account
~James Dunn

Yahoo has a condition known as Syncing that allows it’s multiple services to talk to one another. I’ve had two Friends that have lost access to their email accounts and to any other account related information due to account corruption. Through no fault of their own! Even though they know their current username and password, Yahoo representatives will NOT re-sync the account unless the customer can provide the account:

1. Username
2. Date of Birth
3. Postal code

Your password apparently does not matter. Their software requires you to know the Date of Birth and Postal Code you used in your account. Did you use a ficticious Birth Date when you created your account?

I just found out that Yahoo does not let the customer see their own date of birth! The postal code is published in the profile section of your account.

http://profiles.yahoo.com/username

Knowing the Date of Birth and Postal Code is EXTREMELY important to help protect access to your email, contact information, blog access, financial services, and all other Yahoo services associated with your account.

Link to online Yahoo Help form:
http://help.yahoo.com/l/us/yahoo/acct/general.html

If you have lost access to your account, you can call Yahoo services at:

866-562-7219
press 2 for password and access help .

How to get Yahoo to Protect your Data:

Contact Yahoo corporate and request that they change their Customer Service software to allow the username and current password to be used to re-sync your account and update your date of birth. Also have Yahoo provide a means of backing up your data on your computer.

email them at: my-login-support@cc.yahoo-inc.com

Copy and Paste the following, to the above email link:

Yahoo has a security problem; users are losing vast amounts of data. I am requesting that Yahoo-Inc provide the following:

1.
A user wants to have their account services resynced. They should not have to provide ANY security identification. Yahoo should be required to maintain the sync on all accounts without user interaction. The user that contacts customer service with “just” their username should have sufficient authority to resync an account. No information is requested by the user. They just want their account services to be repaired.

An automated script can be created by Yahoo to run a diagnostic sequentially on a list of Yahoo usernames. Customer Service would only have to pop the requested username into the username list and the script would automatically run a diagnostic and resync account services. If the user still has a problem, it’s not related to service syncing and a password or birthdate is required for further assistance.
2.
In the sign-up webpage, where entering the Birthdate is requested. Indicate the extreme importance of entering the birthdate “correctly”. “Incorrect entry may make it impossible for Users to recover access to their account.”
3.
In addition to the Birthdate and Postal Code, provide access to Customer Service and the user account through use of their Password (since this should provide access to the user account anyway). Presently the current password can NOT be used by Customer Service to gain entry to the user account.
4.
Create an automated script that allows users to securely BACKUP ALL of their Yahoo account settings and data to a CD/DVD. Also create a reverse application to allow the user to take the CD/DVD and upload that information into a new account or the present account. That way if the user account becomes corrupted, the user can upload their saved data and settings.

To discourage abuse, a code sent along with the download to the CD would prevent the user from uploading the user data to more than two (2) accounts (husband and wife / significant other accounts). Also, through intent, the procedure would take 30 minutes to complete (download or upload), locking out any access to Yahoo services from that IP Address during that time; even though the total data transfer may take only 10 seconds or less.

Yahoo presently has a similar and simplified tool for saving the user address book. However, a comprehensive cross-service backup is desired to include ALL settings and formatting: the blog pages (including friends, comments, messages, … from 360 and mash), financial information from Yahoo Finance, all information and settings associated with email (contact lists, messages, folders, …), and similarly with ALL Yahoo services linked by the user account name.

If a third account is created and the data on the CD/DVD is attempted to be uploaded, warn the user that the original account which originated that CD/DVD will be made inactive, and then deleted. The account that originated the CD/DVD would be deleted after 1 month following the creation of the third new account; reception of email is still allowed during that month, sending email is disabled after 24 hours. Appropriate messages would be sent by Yahoo to both the Old and the New Account as appropriate. Email would NOT automatically forward to the new account so that SPAM is deterred. All other related Yahoo Services would recieve similar messages.

The importance here is that all accounts are completely independent, so that any potential server problem does not propagate to the new accounts. This provides the user with a means to protect their Yahoo related data.

The reasoning for these requests:

The email account for two different Yahoo users located on different continents were corrupted, to the point that the users can not provide any information that would allow them to recover access to their account, or the data in those accounts. Based on probability and that I know only a few hundred Yahoo members, that would mean many thousands of Yahoo members have had similar problems.

One used a ficticious birthdate to protect themselves from identity theft; they did not know the importance of the birthdate entry. While the other new the birthdate and postal code, but still could not gain entry into their account.

How does the Birthdate protect user security? Without the user knowing the importance initially, Yahoo ensures that their account will eventually be corrupted.

Yahoo has provided significant means by which people can interact with the internet. But as such, the time, effort, and trust users have entrusted Yahoo makes Yahoo “ethically” responsible for ensuring reasonable access to Yahoo user created information.

Presently, Yahoo negligently destroys a large piece of user developed life. One of these people lost access to a blog she had been developing for 5 years; providing detailed information about life in Thailand as a public service. Additionally, she lost her contact list where she had made friends throughout the world.

Destructive Hackers:
Does Yahoo have a security problem where a hacker is intentionally corrupting Yahoo user accounts?

Yahoo Customer Service: 866-562-7219

* press 2 for Yahoo password and access help

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