Breaches Upon Breaches: Sony, X-Factor, LastPass...

Monday, May 16, 2011

Robert Siciliano

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When a major corporation like Sony gets hit then you know we are all vulnerable. Sony is a great company and like many great corporations is under constant attack.

The landscape of information security is changing every day and criminals are aiming their cyber-weapons at the biggest targets in the world.

TechNewsWorld reports LastPass, the password manager was under attack last week. “Users rely on it to store the myriad user names and passwords they inevitably collect as they go about their business on the Web.

With LastPass, they only have to remember one single master password. LastPass handles the rest — including, presumably, security.”

Simon Cowell's X-Factor show was hit too. The Daily Star reports “Closely guarded secrets about media mogul Simon Cowell and his new US ­ X Factor show have been “stolen” by sneaky cyber crooks. The personal information and act ­details of more than 250,000 wannabes have also been exposed”.

In an email to the victims of the breach it stated: “This week, we learned that computer hackers illegally accessed information you and others submitted to us to receive information about The X Factor auditions."

"It is possible, however, that the information you did provide to us, which included your name, email address, zip code, phone number (which was optional), date of birth, and gender, may have been accessed”.

Cybercrooks are jumping on the news of Osama Bin Laden’s demise. Spam campaigns and malware that piggy back on the news and seek to trick unwitting computer users into clicking links or opening attachments are making the rounds and McAfee Labs expects to see more over the coming days.

Computer users should be cautious and especially on guard when they receive messages that purport to offer photos of Bin Laden’s body, funeral at sea or any additional details.

It is important to observe basic security precautions to protect your identity. However, the safety of your information with corporations and other entities that you transact business with is very often beyond your control.

Consumers should consider an identity theft protection product that offer daily credit monitoring, proactive identity surveillance, lost wallet protection, and alerts when suspicious activity is detected on your accounts.

McAfee Identity Protection includes all these features in addition to live help from fraud resolution agents if your identity is ever compromised. For more tips on protecting yourself, please visit http://www.counteridentitytheft.com

Robert Siciliano is a McAfee Consultant and Identity Theft Expert. See him discussing how a person becomes an identity theft victim on CounterIdentityTheft.com (Disclosures)

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