Your free email accounts could cost you your reputation.

Old email accounts can cost you your reputation.

Really, if you are still holding onto your old free email accounts through AOL, MSN, Yahoo!, SBCGlobal, and the rest, please review them. You may not remember the login because you only use it for throwaway subscriptions just to gain access. There may be a price to pay for that.

Do you ever receive emails from friends, but it’s not really an account they usually use and it only contains a vague message and a link? That’s a HACK. Their account has been hacked on that email system and their address book raided. They didn’t even know it happened. Hopefully, you have another address for them and can alert them.

But for your protection, please go find those accounts, regain access and CHANGE YOUR PASSWORD for one thing. Change it to something long and complicated. 123456! and all variations is not a password. Nor is QWERTY or ASDFJKL; Password + anything is not secure. Make it tough! @iiLW-fA183! is a good start – something AWFUL to remember.

Then, go to the inbox and clean it out.

Then, go to the SENT box and clean it out.

Then, go to the TRASH and clean it out.

Finally, check to see if you are giving this throwaway account any access to your address book, contacts or are syncing it to any of your contacts lists. TURN THAT off and clean out the contacts to NOTHING.

If you really don’t need the account, DELETE IT.