Yahoo email users have been warned about the breach of their data and the need for diligent vigilance in keeping track of suspicious activities in any personal and financial accounts. Yes, Yahoo users were alerted to change Yahoo passwords ASAP.

But what if a Yahoo user decides to change to another email provider and wants to delete her Yahoo email account? Now that’s not as easy or efficient or effective as it might first appear.

Zack Whittaker for Zero Day has published an excellent article outlining some of the difficulties Yahoo users have encountered in trying to do just that.  (“Deleting your Yahoo email account? Yeah, good luck with that”; February 17; http://www.zdnet.com/article/yahoo-not-deleting-email-accounts-say-users/?loc=newsletter_large_thumb_related&ftag=TREc64629f&bhid=24712762005371291890829436782174).

As Mr. Whittaker writes, Yahoo’s account deletion steps are not complicated but someone wishing to do so needs to know that the deletion process could take up to almost 90 days to become effective. In fact, Mr. Whittaker reports that some Yahoo users were still getting emails — often fraudulent ones — months after trying to delete their accounts.

One final scary thought: Mr. Whittaker contacted Yahoo and a spokesperson told him that, per Yahoo’s privacy policy, users’ messages that have been copied could remain in Yahoo’s back-up storage for some unidentified period of time following the user going through the account deletion request process.

Just one more reason for Yahoo email account users to be extremely cautious.