This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.
CNET News Video: Do you trust Yahoo to recycle your username and protect your data?
About Video Comments (0 ) Transcript

CNET News Video: Do you trust Yahoo to recycle your username and protect your data?

2:26 /

On July 15, Yahoo will start taking the usernames of inactive accounts -- accounts that haven't been used in a year -- and letting others claim them. It's a way for Yahoo to make available some desirable usernames and entice people to return to the site. But with e-mail addresses tied to other accounts and password retrieval, there could be security problems. CNET's Kara Tsuboi explains how Yahoo is planning to protect users' information.

-Yahoo has a message for the thousands of users who haven't used their Yahoo e-mail or IDs in the past 12 months. Use it or lose it. -You could imagine how many usernames have been created over the last, you know, decade or two. And so, there is a significant number of accounts that have just become inactive. And the best thing to do for users is just make these available again. -On July 15th at midnight, Pacific Time, Yahoo will cancel accounts of these inactive users and invite people to try to claim these newly available usernames. -So, let's say my current e-mail address is kara123456@yahoo.com. But I've always wanted just kara@yahoo. I can go to Yahoo, request Kara or karat@yahoo, and then hope that my request is one of those recycled names. -Yahoo says they'll inform people in mid-August if they're awarded the username they requested. But recycling usernames is bringing up privacy and security concerns, with so many online logins and passwords linked to our e-mails. Yahoo says that it's working to ensure users' information will be protected if they lose their Yahoo ID and others claim it. -We'll go through and do some cleanup work to ensure that, you know, data doesn't end up in the wrong places, and unsubscribe that particular ID from any newsletters. We're working with a handful of our partners and peers in the space collaboratively on a program that will basically help them understand if account has been recycled and potentially has a new owner so that they can do the right thing for the user on that property. So for example, if you're, you know, if this is a user on Amazon who's trying to recover their password, we'll help them understand if the account has been recycled, the password information won't get sent to the new user of that account. -While Yahoo says they're confident in their cleanup process, experts say you should take security measures into your own hands. -I think it's a very good idea to go through accounts that you may have associated that Yahoo e-mail with and dissociate them yourselves. Use Yahoo's plan to do cleanup for you as a last line of defense, not as your first line of defense. -If you want to keep your Yahoo ID and e-mail, just make sure to sign in to Yahoo or log in to your Yahoo e-mail by July 14th, 11:59 PM, Pacific Time. In San Francisco, I'm Kara Tsuboi, CNET.com for CBS News.
  • This is the interactive sidebar!

    Click any icon for more information as they appear--don't worry, we'll pause the video and wait for you to come back.

  • Links Polls Galleries
  • Video Review

New releases

7 useful Google Now commands
3:13 September 2, 2014
Anyone who owns an Android device should know these seven Google Now commands.
Play video
Tomorrow Daily 045: Apple's spaceship...
22:56 September 2, 2014
On today's show, we take a look at Apple's newest campus during the early stages of construction (it's huge...
Play video
Just how safe is iCloud and other...
1:36 September 2, 2014
Even if you're not a celebrity like Jennifer Lawrence, there are plenty of reasons why the average computer...
Play video
On the road: 2014 Mazda MX-5 M...
6:39 September 2, 2014
After 25 years of Miata, Mazda is perhaps the most successful maker of sports cars in modern history. Brian...
Play video
Car Tech 101: OBD-II apps and...
3:04 September 2, 2014
Brian Cooley explains how the OBD-II port under your dash can feed a secret interface to your car for moment...
Play video
Smarter driver: Downsides of c...
2:00 September 2, 2014
Brian Cooley tells you why your daily car commute could be bad for your health.
Play video
How to guard your iCloud from...
2:51 September 2, 2014
Hackers attacked the iCloud accounts of some celebrities, so it's time to boost your own cloud-security awareness....
Play video
The 404 Show 1,544: iCloud leak...
32:39 September 2, 2014
Today we'll discuss what the celebrity photo leak has taught the world, why you can't use only emojis to communicate...
Play video