Newsletters
Customer Relationship Management News NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Click for more information, or
Home CRM Systems Customer Service Contact Centers Business Intelligence More Topics...
Eliminate costly downtime!
Find out how with Free White Paper
& enter to win a Samsung Galaxy Note

www.apc.com
Big Data
24/7/365 Network Uptime
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Hacky New Year, Snapchat and Skype
Hacky New Year, Snapchat and Skype

By Barry Levine
January 2, 2014 1:25PM

Bookmark and Share
Increasingly, it seems that a mega-hack a day is the new norm. In the past couple days, both Snapchat and Skype have been hit by cyberattacks. Hackers posted as many as 4.6 million Snapchat usernames and phone numbers. And the Syrian Electronic Army hacked into Skype's social media accounts, warning its owner, Microsoft, to stop spying.
 



Another day another story -- or two -- of the hacking of well-known brands. This time, it’s Snapchat and Skype. Reports circulated on Tuesday night that as many as 4.6 million Snapchat usernames and phone numbers have been posted online as a downloadable database, apparently by the same hackers who breached the company’s security.

By Wednesday morning, the site where the data was posted had been taken down, and the posting said that the information “was being shared with the public to raise awareness” of a security issue on the site. The last two numbers of the posted phone numbers were “censored,” the hackers said, in order to “minimize spam and abuse.” But it invited visitors to “ask for the uncensored database,” which the hackers said they might release “under certain circumstances.”

Find Friends Feature

The vulnerability in question, made public by security firm Gibson Security, is one the company has known about, as it noted in a post on the official company blog on December 27. It described a Find Friends feature that allows users to upload address book contacts and then find the Snapchat accounts matching the phone numbers in the address book, if the Snapchat accounts have uploaded an optional phone number.

“Theoretically,” the posting noted, “if someone were able to upload a huge set of phone numbers, like every number in an area code, or every possible number in the U.S., they could create a database of the results and match usernames to phone numbers that way.”

In the December 27 posting, the company said it had implemented various safeguards in the past year to make this kind of match “more difficult to do,” but, as evidenced by the posted 4.6 million usernames and phone numbers, apparently not difficult enough.

But, if it’s any consolation to up-and-coming Snapchat, the venerable technology giant Microsoft has also suffered a recent hack attack. On New Year’s Day, the headline of a post on the Skype blog touted that the site had been “Hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army.”

‘Stop Spying’

The headline added that Microsoft, which owns Skype, should “stop spying,” a sentiment that was also relayed in an apparent hacking of Skype’s Twitter and Facebook accounts. Additionally, contact information for outgoing CEO Steve Ballmer was posted. The messages and contact information have since been removed, and Microsoft said that “no user info was compromised.”

The hacks follow the theft late last month of confidential data relating to 40 million credit and debit cards from the retailer Target.

Laura DiDio, an analyst with industry research firm Information Technology Intelligence Corp., noted that, these days, “a hack-a-day is unfortunately the new norm.”

She pointed out that, while these mega-hacks are taking place much more frequently these days, there are still things businesses and companies can do to minimize their exposure. “The biggest threat to most organizations,” DiDio said, “remains end users," and companies can review, update and implement policies to encourage and enforce best practices by its employees.
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



APC has an established a reputation for solid products that virtually pay for themselves upon installation. Who has time to spend worrying about system downtime? APC makes it easy for you to focus on business growth instead of business downtime with reliable data center systems and IT solutions. Learn more here.


 Big Data
1.   Cloud Wars: AWS vs. Microsoft, IBM
2.   Watson's First Consumer-Facing Gig
3.   HP Drops $50M on Hortonworks
4.   IBM, California Partner in the Cloud
5.   Teradata Bets Big on 2 Big Data Buys


advertisement
Comcast Customer Service Fiasco
Lessons to be learned for all companies.
Average Rating:
Apple, IBM Team on Mobile Biz Apps
A match made in technology heaven.
Average Rating:
U.K. Wants Data Retention Law
After citizens right-to-privacy verdict.
Average Rating:
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Tor Internet Privacy Service Warns Users It Was Breached
You may never have heard of the Tor Project, but the Internet privacy service is making headlines. Tor’s devs say users might be victims of an attack launched against the project earlier this year.
 
Canadian Government Charges China With Cyberattack
The government of Canada is not happy with China. Canadian officials have accused "a highly sophisticated Chinese state-sponsored actor" of launching a cyberattack on its National Research Council.
 
Researchers Working To Fix Tor Security Exploit
Developers for the Tor privacy browser are scrambling to fix a bug revealed Monday that researchers say could allow hackers, or government surveillance agencies, to track users online.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
AMD's ARM-Based Opteron Out in $3K Dev Kit
It's dubbed "Seattle" and it's AMD's first 64-bit ARM-based Opteron processor. The low-power chip is being released as part of AMD’s Opteron A1100-series developer kit, and aimed at high-end data center needs.
 
Apple Updates MacBook Pros, Cuts Prices Up to $100
The popular MacBook Pro laptop line just got an update and a price cut of as much as $100. The MacBook Pro with Retina display now includes faster processors and double the memory.
 
Dell, BlackBerry Not Sweating Apple-IBM Alliance
IBM's recent move to partner with Apple to sell iPhones and iPads loaded with corporate applications has excited investors in both companies, but two rivals say they are unperturbed for now.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Virgin Mobile Offers Custom Smartphone Plans
As the wireless carrier wars continue heating up, Virgin Mobile just threw the customization coal onto the fire. The firm has debuted a no-annual-contract plan with rates based on individual use.
 
Collaboration Provider Asana Revamps Mobile App
Asana, a collaboration software provider started by a Facebook founder, is now out with a rebuilt native iOS mobile app. It replaces one that even the company admits was not up to par.
 
Facebook: You Will Use Messenger, and You Will Like It
Starting this week, Facebook users with Android and iOS phones will be forced to use the separate Messenger app to send Facebook messages. Pending messages will still be visible in the main app.
 

Navigation
CRM Daily
Home/Top News | CRM Systems | Customer Service | Contact Centers | Business Intelligence | Sales & Marketing | Customer Data | CRM Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.