Russian hackers steal over 1 billion passwords

A big security breach affecting over 1 billion passwords could put your private information at risk. This hack was record-breaking and underlines that the security of your passwords is not just a U.S. challenge and must be attacked globally. Hackers don’t care about countries or even continents – they can get to you. The numbers are staggering: 1.2 billion passwords and usernames were stolen by Russian criminals, according to security founder Alex Holden of Hold Security.

“We were able to research this particular gang and find this staggering discovery. Russia is one of those hot-beds of cyber crime because people there are intelligent, but they feel that their crimes will go unpunished.”

A bit of good news: Holden says the criminals didn’t get into any major e-mail providers. But, one respected security firm says this could be the largest collection of stolen digital credentials ever.

“Thankfully, this particular cyber gang is mostly interested in making money off spam. However, if it gets into other hands on this black market, these people can use these credentials to get into any account that has been compromised.”

Cyber security experts are pointing to this news as a reminder to users:

– Change your password often.

– Don’t use the same password for multiple log-ins.

– In other words, your e-mail, banking and social media log-ins should be different.

“Choosing wisely, making different passwords for many different websites – as well as making these passwords very complex – is now the responsibility of the user.”

So bottom line: if you see spam being sent from your e-mail or social media accounts, you may be among those affected. Has that ever happened to you? Your friends start contacting you about getting e-mails from you with some product or service or some kind of money scheme? That’s why the hackers want access to your account; it allows them to expand their network and helps them to hide. And by the way, the people who hacked your information don’t use it themselves – they sell it to someone who sells it to someone else. Thus, catching them is nearly impossible. Change your passwords.

Categories: KUSI