TriCom Technical Services

Really, LinkedIn?

In breach, data, LinkedIn, password, security, spam on June 7, 2012 at 2:33 pm

Suspicion that LinkedIn would be susceptible to a data security breach never crossed my mind and apparently LinkedIn hadn’t thought about it either. A Russian forum is supposedly responsible for the hack – a breach of nearly 6.5 million hashed user passwords.

This sensitive data has been posted over the last 3 days, of which 60% of the passwords listed have been cracked. So far, no usernames have been posted, which could mean one of two things. Either the hacker didn’t obtain this information, or they are keeping the usernames to themselves.

To avoid allowing hackers access to your account and connections, change your password. In fact, any other online accounts with the same password could also be compromised – experts recommend changing those passwords as well to be on the safe side.

As for Pro users who supply credit card information to upgrade their accounts, it is yet to be revealed if this information has also been jeopardized.

According to CIO.com, “LinkedIn says that it will email all the users whose accounts were affected by the hack and give them instructions as to what to do next. The company warns that you should not click on any email links asking you to change your password, as that could be someone attempting to steal your information.”

Spam campaigns have begun to produce from this incident, trying to take advantage of LinkedIn users worried about passwords.

PCWorld reports, “the bogus LinkedIn message [right], crafted to look like a genuine communication from the site, asks the recipient to confirm his or her e-mail address and contains a link for doing so. Clicking the link spirits the target to an illegal online pharmacy selling Viagra and other medications.”

If you haven’t already, change your password now!

As mentioned in previous blogs, we have visited this issue before. Online security is a big deal, and we have witnessed many security breaches in the last year (Apple, Sony PlayStation, and all major credit card brands, just to name a few).

Have we not learned our lesson? Hackers are getting better and smarter every day. When can we safely provide personal information on online platforms without fear of losing it to a hacker?

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