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Yahoo confirms ‘state-sponsored’ hack, 500 million accounts affected

Update: Following on from yesterday’s news, Yahoo has officially confirmed that it suffered a major security breach in which the information of 500 million user accounts was stolen. This hack actually took place in late 2014 and similarly to the hack on Sony in 2014, the attack on Yahoo may also have been state-sponsored, though the exact culprit has not been named.

In a message to its users, Yahoo explained that account information may have included “names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (the vast majority with bcrypt) and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers.”

Right now, there is no evidence that the ‘state-sponsored actor’ still has access to Yahoo’s internal network and law enforcement is now involved. Those who may have been affected by this hack are being notified by Yahoo and will need to update the security information for their accounts. At this time, it does not look like this has affected the acquisition deal between Yahoo and Verizon.

Original Story: It looks like Yahoo may have suffered a massive security breach recently, which could impact millions of users. So far, Yahoo has yet to publicly confirm the data leak but according to sources close to the situation, the breach is ‘widespread and serious’, we should also be getting confirmation from the company fairly soon.

This information comes from sources speaking with Recode, who claim that this breach is ‘as bad’ if not worse than the reported leak that happened a few months ago, in which hackers claimed to have accessed 200 million Yahoo accounts and began selling them online.

Yahoo

A major security breach at this time could have lasting repercussions for Yahoo too, as the company is in the process of being acquired by Verizon. This breach could end up scaring off shareholders and could lower the value of the acquisition deal, which has yet to be completed.

At the moment, Yahoo has yet to comment on these reports but if it is planning to confirm the breach, we should hear something soon.

KitGuru Says: It looks like Yahoo could be in a tough position here, not just with its millions of users, but with Verizon too, which is said to be acquiring Yahoo. If you happen to use Yahoo, it might be a good time to change passwords.

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