Your Yahoo Account May Be Part Of More Than 1 Billion Hacked Accounts Auctioned On Dark Web; Yahoo Verizon Deal Is Off?
It can be well remembered that sometime around August 2013, the email system of Yahoo has been penetrated by hackers. Hackers successfully and illegally obtained the information of more than 1 billion users, including names, birth dates, phone numbers and passwords that were encrypted with an easily broken form of security.
The worst part is that hackers had also acquired the security questions and backup email addresses used to reset lost passwords which are indeed valuable information for someone trying to break into other accounts owned by the same user and particularly useful to a hacker seeking to break into government computers around the world.
It was reported that these includes several million of the backup addresses belonged to military and civilian government employees from dozens of nations, 150,000 of those are Americans, as reported by Bloomberg.
What happened to those data were unknown but recently, the New York Times reports that a billion-user database was sold on the Dark Web last August for $300,000, according to Andrew Komarov, chief intelligence office at security firm InfoArmor.
He told NYT that three buyers, including two prominent spammers and another who might be involved in espionage tactics purchased the entire database at the aforementioned price from a hacker group. The said hacker group was claimed to be based in Eastern Europe.
What is even more surprising is that the alleged hacked data values at $300,000 to be able to threaten a billion people's online existence. In simpler terms, each account is only worth $0.0003 to hackers who can ruin your life online in a matter of minutes.
Until now, Yahoo has failed to solve the mystery of who are responsible. Yahoo has said that it hasn't been able to verify Komarov's claims yet; meanwhile, the FBI said in a statement that is still currently investigating the breach.
Komarov noted that the database is still up for sale, though bids for it have not plummeted as low as $20,000 as Yahoo has forced a password reset.
Currently, Yahoo faces these controversial and alarming claims while the company itself is set to be sold to Verizon for $4.8 billion. Verizon was reported by Fortune to have demanded a one billion-dollar discount after news of the 500 million-user breach earlier this year. Considering recent events and if Komarov's claims are true, Yahoo may walk empty-handed.