Data Belonging to 50 Million LivingSocial Customers Compromised

The online deals company, LivingSocial has become the latest company to report a data breach that has compromised data belonging to over 50 million people who have an account with the company. LivingSocial have stated that they believe that data such as customers’ names, email addresses, dates of births and encrypted passwords have been compromised in the attack. It has also been confirmed that no credit card details has been stolen.

LivingSocial released a statement on their website confirming the data breach. “The information accessed includes names, email addresses, date of birth for some users, and encrypted passwords – technically ‘hashed’ and ‘salted’ passwords.”

LivingSocial have started to make contact with all the affected customers notifying them of the data breach and are requesting that they all change their passwords. There is also a banner on the homepage of their website asking everyone to change their password if they haven’t already done so.

In an email sent out to all those affected, LivingSocial CEO Tim O’Shaughnessy wrote, “The security of your information is our priority. We always strive to ensure the security of our customer information, and we are redoubling efforts to prevent any issues in the future.”

It is becoming an ever too familiar story in which a company has to notify thousands of their customers regarding a data breach which has compromised their personal data. The main reasons for the increased number of such cases are because companies are being reactive as to proactive. Security measures aren’t being continuously tested and updated and therefore increasing the likelihood of a data breach occurring. Hackers are exploiting this and are increasing the frequency of attacks and using more sophisticated methods.

George Tubin who is a senior security strategist at Trusteer stated, “In light of recent successful widespread attacks against major social networking sites, it’s obvious that these providers are simply not doing enough to protect their customers’ information.”

As hackers are becoming more prevalent and sophisticated with their attacks, the importance of backing up your data is becoming ever more important. If someone gains unauthorised access to your servers and deletes or modifies critical business data, are you confident that you will be able to recover this data with the minimum amount of downtime?

With such as case such as LivingSocial, it shows that many are still acting re-actively as to proactively. It is important to test your security measures on a regular basis with the knowledge that your data is being successfully backed up and is recoverable in the event of  data loss.

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