In the digital age we live in, the security and protection of personal information is vital for both individuals and businesses. One of the most common threats we face online is account takeover, also known as an ATO (Account Takeover). In this article, we’ll explain what account hijacking is and how you can prevent it from happening in your business.

What is account takeover?

Account takeover occurs when an attacker gains unauthorized access to an online account, whether owned by an individual or a business. This can happen due to various vulnerabilities in authentication systems, such as weak passwords, password reuse, phishing, or malware.

Once attackers take over an account, they can perform a variety of malicious actions, including stealing personal information, making fraudulent purchases, distributing spam, or even committing financial fraud. These activities can cause serious economic and reputational damage to the individuals and organizations affected.

How to avoid account hijacking?

Keeping your accounts secure is imperative to safeguarding your data and protecting your assets online. Here are some steps you can take to prevent account takeover:

1. Use strong and unique passwords

Choosing strong and unique passwords is critical to protecting your online accounts. Make sure your passwords are long and complex enough, combining letters (upper and lower case), numbers and special characters. In addition, it is recommended to use a different password for each account and change them regularly.

2. Enable two-factor authentication

Two-factor authentication (2FA) adds an extra layer of security to your accounts. When you activate this feature, you will be asked for a second authentication factor, such as a code sent to your mobile phone, in addition to your password. This makes it very difficult for an attacker to hijack your account, since they would also need to have physical access to your device.

3. Be alert for phishing signs

Phishing is a technique used by cybercriminals to trick you into getting personal information or access credentials to your accounts. Learn how to identify suspicious emails or messages and avoid clicking unknown links or providing sensitive information on unsafe websites. Keep your security software up to date and use anti-malware tools.

4. Stay up to date with security patches

Software developers and online platforms often release security updates and patches to protect their systems against new vulnerabilities. Make sure to keep your applications and operating systems up to date, as this will help protect you against the latest threats.

5. Implement trusted identity verification solutions

One of the most effective ways to prevent account takeover is to incorporate robust identity verification solutions into your digital onboarding process. These solutions make it possible to verify the identity of users remotely, using techniques such as facial recognition, document verification and biometrics. By implementing these solutions, you can ensure that only authorized people have access to your services or products.


Account hijacking can have devastating consequences for individuals and businesses. However, by taking proactive measures, such as using strong passwords, enabling two-factor authentication, and implementing trusted identity verification solutions, you can greatly reduce the risk of an ATO.

Online security is everyone’s responsibility. Stay informed about the latest threats and make sure you protect your accounts and the sensitive information they contain.

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