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Wide World of Pranks: Computer Pranks

How to disable a Google GMail Account

This prank is simply evil because it can be so destructive so very quickly. This will also work to a lesser degree with Yahoo Mail, Hotmail and other web-based email providers as well.

Imagine how paralyzed you would be if your e-mail account quit working. Well, if your victim uses GMail, Yahoo Mail or other free e-mail services, it's really easy to do. It might be illegal, and it may take weeks before your victim can recover their e-mail account, so I would not encourage you to do it. However, promoting this prank will do two things; one educate people who visit Planet Wally how to protect themselves and naturally, two demonstrate a very good way to knock someone silly. This prank uses Google's own security measures against your victim.

How it Works:
Google is proud of the fact that nobody has ever successfully spoofed a GMail account so they could use it fraudulently. It does so by restricting access to an e-mail account if a third party tries to log in with an incorrect password. All you have to do is go to Google GMail's Web site, type in the e-mail address of the victim, try any password you like and click submit. Then do it again. After a few tries, Google will automatically disable the account for investigation. Usually three or four incorrect password tries is enough to disable an e-mail account.

It's that simple.

So for example, lets say your victim has an e-mail address like I would assume since this address was hacked, it is now disabled. You would go to Yahoo Mail's Web site, type in, try a password like Drill!Drill!Drill! and press Log In. Repeat this process a few times and Yahoo will automatically disable the account.

If the person does not have an alternate e-mail account, they have no way of using the automated system to prove they are the legitimate e-mail account user. In the case of Google, it does not have a tech support number you can call. The person has to waddle through Google's help system, and it can literally take weeks to find the right person to reset the account.

This prank might also work with other free e-mail services.

For more information on how this works, check out this article.

How To Protect Yourself:
The best thing you can do is make sure you follow Google's Terms of Service. Have an e-mail account not attached to GMail as a back-up account. If you use Google GMail, create an account with Yahoo Mail. If you use Yahoo Mail, get a separate account with Google GMail. This way if this happens, you have an easy course of action to use the automated system to reset the account.

Remember folks, any prank you can easily play on someone could be used against you as well.

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