In 2013, Yahoo was hit by a massive data breach which much of its details later surfaced in 2016. Verizon, Yahoo’s parent company announced on Tuesday that the data breach which occurred in August 2013 affected every single Yahoo account i.e Yahoo email accounts, Tumblr, Fantasy and Flickr accounts and it accounted for about 3billion in total as against earlier claim of 1 billion.
Verizon is making this shocking announcement after about four months the company acquired Yahoo’s core internet business for about $4.48 billion. The search engine and email client is now part of Verizon’s digital media subsidiary, Oath.
Verizon after thorough investigation with the assistance of unknown outside forensic experts came up with this figure.
However, despite the huge figures, no sensitive financial information was affected but Names, E-mail addresses and Passwords of users were compromised.
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This data breach is however believed to be so massive that Security Researcher Jeremiah Grossman told Wired. “Maybe Google or maybe Facebook, but the next mega-breach is not going to be orders of magnitude bigger.” Grossman was once a Security Officer for yahoo.
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It’s worth noting that this breach is believed to be a separate incident from a 2013 attack which affected 500 million people. That breach is believed to have been sponsored by state actors, and stolen data was found on the dark web.
Practically, this doesn’t change much for many users. Yahoo said it will send emails to the additional two billion accounts. In the wake of the previous one billion account estimate, it pushed password changes and voided unencrypted security questions to affected users.
As always, you should review your accounts for suspicious activity. If you’ve been using the same password since 2013, change it. Follow current password best practices and use a unique password for each platform, website or service you use.
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