Browsers, E-mail, & Web Apps

Question

Email security when logging in from someone else's computer

by DBM01 / April 10, 2012 6:14 PM PDT

Lets say a person P logs in to his gmail account from a computer Q which is either a public computer or someone else's computer. He forgets to enable private browsing. He realizes this later but he no longer has access to the computer Q. He changes his password to prevent further access but there may have been a few hours or days when his password was available on Q's browser.

Now, I can think of two kinds of commonly used software that download web-based email to a computer. The first is an email client such as Outlook and the other is Google Desktop (for gmail only). In both these cases, one needs to configure the software for accessing email by specifically providing one's login and password.

Now lets say the computer Q has Google Desktop as well as an email client such as Outlook. Is it possible that the settings in Google Desktop/Outlook are such that the login/password are automatically imported from the browser and emails downloaded until P actually changes his password. To my knowledge, this cannot happen but I would like to know the opinion of the experts here.

Note that I am not talking about any malicious software in the computer Q that records keystrokes or imports passwords. Nor am I talking about the possibility of another person using the passwords stored in Q's browser to access P's gmail account.

While both these are real possibilities, my question is restricted to legitimate settings in software such as Outlook and Google Desktop, which enable them to automatically import logins/passwords from a browser, as and when a user saves them in the browser, and download emails from the user's gmail account.

Answer This Ask For Clarification
Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: Email security when logging in from someone else's computer
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: Email security when logging in from someone else's computer
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.

All Answers

Collapse -
Answer
Sorry I missed where the question is.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / April 12, 2012 3:36 AM PDT

I'd use a question mark at the end of the question next time.
Bob

Collapse -
Sorry about the question mark
by DBM01 / April 12, 2012 2:51 PM PDT

The question mark should have appeared at the end of the second sentence in the third paragraph.

"Is it possible that the settings in Google Desktop/Outlook are such that the login/password are automatically imported from the browser and emails downloaded until P actually changes his password.?"

Collapse -
Partial answer.
by Kees_B Forum moderator / April 12, 2012 6:29 PM PDT

There's no relationship between MS Outlook and a browser. So that part of the question can be answered with No. If you meant OWA (Outlook web access) in stead of MS Outlook you should have said such explicitely.

I don't use Google desktop, so I can't answer the second part of your question. Generally, a browser asks permission to store a password. If you don't allow it, it isn't stored. But Google desktop might do otherwise.
Why not try it yourself in a new user account on your own PC? For all purposes, that's the equivalent of another PC.


Kees

Popular Forums
icon
Computer Help 47,885 discussions
icon
Computer Newbies 10,322 discussions
icon
iPhones, iPods, & iPads 3,188 discussions
icon
Security 30,333 discussions
icon
TVs & Home Theaters 20,177 discussions
icon
HDTV Picture Setting 1,932 discussions
icon
Phones 15,713 discussions
icon
Windows 7 6,210 discussions
icon
Networking & Wireless 14,510 discussions

Tech for the holiday

Find recipes for July 4 with these foodie apps

The Fourth of July means fireworks, fun and food. If you're planning on a barbecue this weekend, we've got the apps to help you find holiday-inspired recipes.