Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Xploring Yahoo! Password Recovery

It was an awful experience yesterday evening, as I was signing out of my yahoo mail, a strange thought struck me to find out the Challenging question [the secret question you choose while registering yourself for a Yahoo Mail Account]. It has been almost 9 years since I have been using Yahoo Mail and through these years I have changed my PWD occasinally by using the EDIT option, but never tried this way. Since I wanted to find out the Challenging Question, I filled up the password recvoery form & choose GET NEW PASSWORD. Guess what it throws up the secret question "PEOPLE", I had no idea what on earth does that mean? [even now I have no clue about the answer:)]. Then I try signing into my Yahoo Account, guess what happens?, the password has been changed. What started off as exploration, I ended up loosing one of my VIRTUAL Avatar. Even after the invasion of GMAIL, I still use Yahoo Mail & Instant Messaging(IM) regularly @ work & also for keeping in touch with friends, bloggers, school and college buddies, ex-colleagues. So loosing this avatar meant a lot to me, as I would loose lot of contact information[well I could have recovered most of the information & created another Yahoo Account] but that takes a lot of effort and time in organizing your contacts in your virtual address book; adding all the contacts on your IM according to the groups; updating everyone about this new avatar would be a pain.

Now you would ask me aren't there ways you could recover your password. Well there are two options a) You either answer the Challenging question correctly, so that the NEW password gets displayed once you have ANSWERED it correctly or b) Yahoo would e-mail the NEW PASSWORD to your alternate email (NON-YAHOO). Since, I couldn't find a logical answer for the first option, I had no other option but to opt for sending a mail containing the NEW PASSWORD to my alternate mail ID. Well the misery didn't end there, I didn't know for sure which was my alternate mail ID. But, Yahoo! provides a decent help in recovering your passwords, they have taken care of all kinds of scenarios [to be frank they have actually messed up this whole thing of recovering password, I am gonna take that on my next post]. In order to know/change my alternate mail ID, I fill up one more form & submit it for Yahoo Account Services(YAS), within an hour or so I get my first response from them asking me to provide some personal details for verification. I replied back with all the information. After 30 mins, I recieve another mail from Yahoo Account Services asking me to follow the entire procedure of filling up the password recovery form. I followed the entire process religiously and choose Option 2 [send the password to my alternate mail], after the completing the formalities, it displayed a message in another 15 minutes or depending upon the internet traffic a mail would be delivered to your alternate email cotaining my NEW password. Did wait patiently for 20 mins, but I didn't receive any mail from Yahoo Account Services.

Wrote one final mail to YAS that I had not recieved any mail containing the new password even after 30 minutes and I signed off. I told myself that it was time to put all these things behind and rather study for my exams which are due sometime next weekend.

Thanks a lot to Yahoo! Account Services and I hope they modify their design for password recovery.

P.S: Don't ever try to play with your virtual avatars because it holds the key to connecting to the virtual world. BTW, I got a mail from YAS today morning with the NEW PWD and I am happyto have my old Yahoo avatar:)

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