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For some years now, I sometimes get e-mails, that my e-mail has been used to sign up for a mailing list or service, even though I haven’t signed up for it.

It’s not something that happens very often, sometimes weeks pass by, sometimes I get 1 or 2 in a week.

I would like to inform, that my e-mail has indeed been in multiple data breaches and was also attempted hacked about 5 weeks ago, After my Discord account was hacked, though, the attacker didn’t gain access, so I responded by fully securing my e-account and other accounts, with complex generated passwords and 2FA.

In regards to my e-mail address being used for signing up for stuff, the way I have handled it so far, was to try and get those sign-ups cancelled, at least for bigger stuff, other than that I just try to add small stuff to spam and move on.

Is this an okay reaponse to this situation?

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  • You might want to check out the suggestions on handling an email bomb.
    – doneal24
    Commented Nov 3, 2022 at 18:14
  • Thank you, I will check it out, though I don’t think that is the problem, as it’s not a lot of them that I get, but for safety I will check it out :)
    – Zippy
    Commented Nov 3, 2022 at 18:22

2 Answers 2

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This happens to me too, from time to time. That's expected; if someone knows my email address, she can use it anyway she wants and there's literally nothing I can do to prevent it.

A couple of things to have in mind:

  • Some times spammers send fake registration emails or newsletters to addresses and wait to see whether an action will be taken from those addresses (e.g. unsubscribe). They do this in order to verify whether this is an active (being used) email address so that they include it to spam lists. Should you receive such an email, first try to figure out whether they come from a legitimate source. If you are confident that the source is valid, then you can try to unsubscribe.
  • As far as I know, sites that allow registration with email addresses should have a step to verify the ownership of the email address by the person that tries to register. If you receive such emails, the best thing you can do is to ignore them.

Also adding such emails to the spam folder (which essentially means that you help the email system "learn" what is spam for you) will generally help.

So, to answer your question, yes, it is ok but keep in mind my first point.

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Yes, This is a good enough response because it temporarily, prevents the adversary/attacker from the ability of using your email to sign-up for newsletters but since you described,"It’s not something that happens very often, sometimes weeks pass by, sometimes I get 1 or 2 in a week." which may suggest that the attack happens often and there might be some backdoors (like keyloggers).

My advice is to change all the passwords,check if your account gets compromised again in the future(maybe a week or months time) and analyze just how did your discord account get hacked?

  • Did you share your mail with a close associate of yours?
  • Did you fill up a suspicious form?
  • Are you sure those emails are from services that you didn't subscribe to (It may have just bypassed the built in spam filter )
  • If possible,enable 2 factor authentication Analyze how and why did your discord account get hacked and see if any similarities exist

and finally,it would also help if 2 factor authentication is enabled.

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  • I was stupid to fall for the “test my game” scam that led my discord to get hacked and a few info from my google chrome, like some old passwords. When it happend around 5 weeks ago, I had my PC fully factory reset and everything, I also did what you suggested and changed all my passwords to strong, long generated passwords and enabled 2FA on everything that I could enable it on, I use a third party password manager, so it makes the process much more manageable, thank you for your comment, I really appreciate it! :)
    – Zippy
    Commented Nov 4, 2022 at 19:44
  • This answer will not help prevent someone from using your email to sign up for things. And there is no indication nor requirement that the device has a backdoor or keylogger. Like the other answer states, as long as I know your email address, I can sign up for everything under the sun.
    – schroeder
    Commented Nov 5, 2022 at 9:51

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