Getting hacked is no fun but what’s even worse is getting hacked and not even knowing about it. If your personal information or sensitive data such as logins and passwords was leaked online without your knowledge, you might be exposed to further hacks and even identity theft. On the other hand, knowing that you’ve been hacked gives you the upper hand since you can change passwords, monitor your accounts for unusual activity and generally be on high alert. Below, you will find several websites where you can check if your information has been leaked online.
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Have I Been Pwned?
One website where you can check if your email has been hacked is haveibeenpwned.com . The word ‘pwned’ is widely used on the internet and among gamers and is slang for ‘owned’. The website, developed by Troy Hunt, works the following way: you enter your email address to check if it has been involved in a security breach. The testing procedure uses several known data breaches on popular websites to see if your email address has been affected. With HIBP you can check not only your email addresses but also usernames on different websites.
An additional feature that the HIBP website offers is the ‘Notify Me’ feature. It allows you to set a notification that will arrive on your phone if your username or email address is involved in a data breach. All you have to do is enter your email address and solve a little captcha puzzle. The captcha is used to identify you as a person and to protect the service against abuse by bots. If you are not sure whether you have been affected by a data breach at a popular website, you can find an overview of previous data breaches under ‘Who’s been pwned’.
You can also check whether your email has been hacked via the English website BreachAlarm. The verification tool is very similar to HIBP’s: after you enter your email address in the field on the home page, the tool scans the internet looking for stolen email addresses and passwords posted by hackers. Often, the tapped email addresses with associated passwords are traded on the darknet or on hacker forums. The service’s database now contains more than 700 million unique email addresses.
BreachAlarm also offers the possibility to register for notification service. Special features for companies can be found under ‘Business’. This way you can determine in a few steps how many employee accounts have been affected by a possible data breach. This feature also includes a warning mode for any future password theft.
Identity Leak Checker
The last tool in this overview comes from Hasso-Plattner-Institut in Germany. The tool is available in English and German and it searches internet databases for stolen identity data. All you have to do is go to the HPI website, enter your email address and click the “Check email address!” button. The tool not only answers the question “Has my email been hacked?”, but also checks whether other personal information has been published online or has been misused. This concerns telephone numbers, addresses and dates of birth.
A reply email will be sent from the HPI to the address you entered, stating whether your account has been hacked and whether your personal information has been shared online. The HPI also tells you when and how the data theft took place.