With troves of sensitive information, like receipts and password reminders, hiding in your email, your inbox can become a sort of Holy Grail for hackers—or anyone with your password. Although my crazy ex-girlfriend had no hacking experience, using my email login, she was able to find a lot of account information with just a general search for "password" in my inbox.
Suffice it to say that that whole debacle was eventually resolved, but it certainly opened my eyes and showed me how vulnerable we can be when our email is infiltrated. Thankfully, there's now a useful service provided by Dashlane that essentially scans your entire inbox and spits out a security report, including all the sensitive information it was able to find. And you don't need a Dashlane account to use it.
To begin your security check, navigate to Dashlane Inbox Scanner in your browser, select "Scan my inbox," and log in to your Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo! Mail, or AOL Mail account. Dashlane states that their access to your account is temporary and read-only, and that none of your data is stored.
Normally, I'd be weary about giving a third-party access to my email accounts, but given that Dashlane's whole business revolves around you trusting them with your passwords, I think it's safe to say they're not going to try anything malicious.
Once the scan is complete, you will receive a quick overview of the accounts that were found in your inbox in the form of a bubble diagram. Larger bubbles represent larger accounts, and red bubbles indicate that a password was found. Move on to the security report by clicking "Next: Security analysis."
Fortunately, I received a good score, but according to Dashlane, the average score is around 49%. If your score is bad enough, it's worth taking a look as Dashlane's password manager that it offers you below the score.
Tip: You can also use Dashlane to help create stronger passwords.
Also available is a download of your full report, in which you'll be able to see which passwords and personal addresses it was able to find as well as which accounts were breached.
Although a security scan is very convenient in aiding you in the fight against hackers and identity thieves, the scan is strictly for your inbox, which most likely only includes temporary passwords.
The scan doesn't include any other folders like starred, important, or deleted, and probably the biggest culprit of them all—the sent folder, which is where all of your legit passwords will be hiding if you've ever sent a password to your mobile device or vice versa, or to a coworker or spouse.
It's worth mentioning that you may want to do a general search for terms like "password" or "account login" and compare your results against Dashlane's. Don't hesitate to leave us your thoughts in the comments below.