FILE – In this June 5, 2014, file photo, people walk in front of a Yahoo sign at the company’s headquarters in Sunnyvale, Calif. Yahoo says the personal information of 500 million accounts have been stolen in a massive security breakdown that represents the latest setback for the beleaguered internet company.
The stolen account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, and hashed passwords and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers.
“We take these types of breaches very seriously and will determine how this occurred and who is responsible”, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said in a Thursday statement.
The technology company headquartered in Sunnyvale, northern California, said in a website posting, titled “An Important Message About Yahoo User Security”, that it believed a state-sponsored actor was behind the incident and that an investigation had found no evidence that the actor is now in its network.
Recode’s sources did not provide specific details about the breach, but they said an investigation by federal authorities was imminent and that legal action tied to the attack was probable.
The company, which agreed in July to be acquired by Verizon in a deal that’s still pending, said that it believes the hack was undertaken by a “state-sponsored actor” but provided no further details as to which country they believe might have been behind the hack. Yahoo bought Flickr for US$25 million (AU$32.5 million) in 2005, Rivals.com for US$100 million (AU$130 million) in 2007 and Tumblr for US$900 million (AU$1.2 billion) in 2014.
How do I know if I’ve been affected? It also said that the investigators haven’t found any evidence that the hacker is now in Yahoo’s network.
It’s also unknown how many Yahoo profiles can be opened via correct answering of security questions directly. Peace has previously claimed responsibility.
Mark James, of internet security company ESET, said: “As Verizon are about to buy Yahoo, they will have to consider the backlash of future issues with compromised account data”.
Yahoo!’s announcement that it had discovered a hack of some half a billion user accounts dating from 2014 prompted Sen. When you log in to your Yahoo account you should get the Security notice, which will ask you to change to your account security information.
Yahoo has notified potentially affected users and has taken steps to secure their accounts.
“We will evaluate as the investigation continues through the lens of overall Verizon interests, including consumers, customers, shareholders and related communities”.