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How to Delete Yahoo Accounts & Why You Shouldn’t

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Many users want to delete Yahoo accounts after the latest hack confirmed over a billion accounts breached. We’ll show you how to delete Yahoo email accounts, and why you shouldn’t take this drastic step without looking through the ramifications.

Read: Yahoo Hacked – What to Do Now

You’ll need to decide if you want to download your Yahoo email before you delete the account or if you simply want to move on. It takes a little longer to download your Yahoo email to your computer. Yahoo also lists options to take back control of a hacked Yahoo email account and protect it, but there are plenty of reasons to look for a new email provider.

What to know about deleting a Yahoo account. IB Photography / Shutterstock.com

What to know about deleting a Yahoo account. IB Photography / Shutterstock.com

How to Delete Yahoo Accounts

If you decide to delete yahoo accounts that you use, it is a straightforward process that is easiest if you switch to Gmail, but also works if you download emails to your computer.

  1. Download Your Yahoo Email
  2. Download Your Yahoo Contacts
  3. Download Your Yahoo Calendar Entries
  4. Change Your Yahoo Password
  5. Delete Yahoo Account
  6. Don’t Delete Your Yahoo Account


If you use Flickr, make sure you download the Flickr photos before you delete your Yahoo account.

Before you go through that process, it is important to note that deleting Yahoo accounts may not be the best idea. Here’s more on why you should secure your account, switch to a different email account, but leave the Yahoo email account active.

How to Download Yahoo Email

The easiest step is to switch to Gmail and use the import option to download Yahoo Mail and Contacts to Gmail. To do this, sign into Gmail, click on the gear in the upper right and then on Settings. Now click on Accounts and Import and then Import mail and contacts. You’ll need to enter your Yahoo email address and the tool will import your old email, contacts and new mail for 30 days.

If you don’t switch to Gmail you will need to use this guide to connect Yahoo email to a program on your computer to download the messages to your computer in a mail program like Outlook, Mail for macOS Sierra, Thunderbird and others.

Incoming Mail (POP) Server

  • Server – pop.mail.yahoo.com
  • Port – 995
  • Requires SSL – Yes

Outgoing Mail (SMTP) Server

  • Server – smtp.mail.yahoo.com
  • Port – 465 or 587
  • Requires SSL – Yes
  • Requires TLS – Yes (if available)
  • Requires authentication – Yes

Your login info

  • Email address – Your full email address ([email protected])
  • Password – Your account’s password.
  • Requires authentication – Yes

This will pull all of your mail down to your computer so that you have a copy of it locally stored. You’ll need to make sure you back this up with the rest of your data.

How to Download Your Yahoo Contacts

Yahoo shares a handy guide on how to export your Yahoo contacts so that you can import them to your new email service. If you did the Gmail switch in step one, you don’t need to do this.

  1. In Yahoo Mail, click the Contacts icon Graphic of Contacts icon..
  2. Click Actions | select Export.
  3. Select a format to export (if you’re unsure, we recommend Yahoo CSV).
  4. Click Export now.

This downloads a file to your computer that you can import into almost any contact app or service.

How to Download Yahoo Calendar Events

Now you will want to download your calendar. This takes just a minute, and makes a local copy for you to import to another program.

  1. Go to Yahoo Mail and click the Calendar tab.
  2. If you don’t see your calendar(s) listed, click My Calendars in the left panel menu to show your list of calendars.
  3. Click the more options arrow Click arrow to hide folders next to the calendar you want to export.
  4. Click Export.
  5. Click the down arrow and select Export from the menu.
    – The export window opens.
  6. Click Export.
  7. Save the ICS file to your computer.

Once you download this file you can import into the calendar app on your computer or upload and import into most online calendar apps and services.

Change Your Yahoo Password

Now that you have all the Yahoo data, you can change your Yahoo password. This is a good idea since the account is not deleted as soon as you click the button. It is kept in limbo for 90 days before Yahoo deletes it.

  1. Go to the Yahoo Account Info page.
  2. (Mobile web browser only) tap the Menu icon Image of the mobile web version of the menu icon..
  3. Click Account Security.
  4. Click Change password.
  5. Enter and confirm your new password.
  6. Click Continue.
    – A confirmation appears.
  7. Click Continue to finish.

Make sure you choose a strong password that is not the same as a password you use on other accounts.

How to Delete Yahoo Accounts

Now that you’ve made it this far, you’re ready to delete your Yahoo account. It takes just a minute and you can’t undo it.

  1. Go to the “Terminating your Yahoo account” page.
    – If you use a phone number to sign in, visit the alternative account termination page instead.
  2. Read the info under “Before continuing, please consider the following information.”
  3. Confirm your password.
    – Forgot your password? – Recover it with the Yahoo Sign-in Helper.
  4. Click Terminate this Account.

That’s all you need to do to close your Yahoo account. If you decide to reactivate it, you have 90 days to bring it back using this guide.

Why You Shouldn’t Delete Your Yahoo Account

Even if you hate the fact that you have a Yahoo account now that a second round of hacks was made public, there are reasons not to delete your Yahoo account.

After your Yahoo account is no longer in use it may be recycled. If this happens the new owner could still get your emails which might include account access to online services, banks and more.

This outlines what can happen when an email account is recycled, including the information that is exposed in real world examples. If you choose not to delete your Yahoo account, change the password to something strong and log in every six months to keep the account active, but move all your accounts to a new email service.

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