EBay, the online Marketplace with 128 million active users announced this week a cyber-hack that compromised their systems between late February and early March. Cyber attackers accessed the information after obtaining a small number of employee login credentials which was only discovered 2 weeks ago. The files accessed contained customer names, encrypted passwords, email address, physical address, phone number and date of birth, however so far, there has been no evidence of unauthorised activity on member accounts. Although no financial data has been compromised, the list of details could still be used for identity theft and email scams, therefore members are warned to be precautious in emails and phone calls they may receive.
Due to this security breach, eBay is to force it’s members to change their passwords in order to prevent hackers from accessing their profiles. Although the data is encrypted, it doesn’t take long for a hacker to decode this, making the safest option altogether to change the password completely. Emails, social media and alerts on the website are to be issued in order to inform eBay users, as well as a new feature to be uploaded to eBay by the end of the day which forces users to change their passwords immediately as they log in. No information about the type of encryption used has been released.
PayPal Money Transfer Service is also owned by eBay, however there is no evidence to suggest any form of compromise here due to data being stored separately in different divisions whilst also having heavy encryptions. For those users who’s eBay and PayPal passwords are the same, it is heavily suggested for them both to be changed to prevent further data, including financial and personal, from being stolen.
For those of you trying to decide a strong password, here are some tips:
-Don’t choose a password obviously associated with you
-Choose words that don’t appear in the dictionary
-Use a mixture of unusual characters
-Have passwords for different sites and systems
-Keep passwords hidden away safe, either in your memory or a secure, yet accessible notebook.
For news on more recent security breaches, click here