A whopping 22 million Yahoo Japan users have had their user ID information stolen, the company has confirmed, in the latest in a long line of attacks on user databases and social sites in recent months.
The incident hit the firm’s Japanese user base, with the company confirming in a statement reported by the AFP that it had been unable to ascertain exactly how the system had been breached.
“We don’t know if the file was leaked or not, but we can’t deny the possibility, given the volume of traffic between our server and external terminals,” the company said.
The firm said the information stolen did not contain passwords or other information that could be used to hack accounts, but that it had taken additional security measures to prevent a similar incident occurring again.
Ross Brewer, managing director at LogRhythm, said the size of the attack was notable and it underlines the growing threats facing companies operating online.
“It’s no longer that unusual to hear of hacks on this grand scale, and Yahoo is just the latest in an increasingly long line of major brands which is learning that it’s no longer a matter of ‘if’ you’re breached, but ‘when’,” he said.
“To its credit, Yahoo has been quick to come clean about this attack, and should also be commended for providing its members with actionable advice on how to stop hackers from compromising their individual accounts.”
The hack is reminiscent of one that affected Sony in 2011 when it was targeted by Anonymous hackers. This led to the theft of a huge amount of customers’ data and financial losses for the firm. The hack comes amid reports that Yahoo is set to buy social startup Tumblr for $1bn in a move to boost its user base among younger internet users. The firm will have to make sure it reassures users that a similar incident won’t occur again.
US space agency believes the crater could have preserved ancient organic molecules from the water that flowed there billions of years ago
Valve quietly closes down hardware initiatives launched following Windows 8
Scientists create a virtual reality simulation of a black hole sitting at the centre of the Milky Way
Simulations like this can help people understand complicated systems in the universe in a better way
The most luminous galaxy ever discovered is cannibalising at least three of its smaller neighbours, study finds
The galaxy radiates at 350 trillion times the luminosity of the Sun