So change your eBay and PayPal passwords already

In a widely reported story it turns out that eBay got hacked sometime last February and since they also own PayPal anybody that uses the same password for both accounts should be worried too. So, you should probably change your passwords and don’t open any suspicious emails. You might also want to check your identity while you’re at it.

Earlier today the company admitted that the names, email addresses, birth dates, encrypted passwords, physical addresses and phone numbers of 145 million customers were stolen. That’s kind of a big oops!

Apparently the hackers gained access to eBays corporate computers by gaining login names and passwords of some eBay employees somehow (let me guess, their passwords were something like 1234 or Toddisgod or something equally stupid).

Related: Now it's PayPal's turn: two factor authentication is hackable

Once inside the corporate computer system it was relatively trivial to steal everybody’s information. I suppose it is fortunate that eBay stores passwords in hashed form (a relatively simple scrambling of the characters) but hashing isn’t terribly secure.

Alan Marks, eBay’s senior vice president of global communications, said that eBay stored its own financial data separately. Good to know that they protected their own assets but not their customers’ asses.

So we’ve done our civic duty by reporting the breach and warning you (like nearly every other website in the world) to change your eBay passwords.

Hell, you might as well take a few minutes and change all your passwords right now.

Related: Stolen eBay data up for sale – but is it really from eBay?

I’m not kidding…go do it now…we’ll wait for you to get back.

You’re not going to do it are you?

Okay, don’t say I didn’t warn you.

It’s getting to the point where every time you log onto a site you should change your password and every time you charge something on your credit card you are going to have to cancel the card and get a new one because these days it seems like large institutions are getting hacked faster than GM can issue more automobile recalls.

Guy Wright

Guy Wright has been covering the technology space since the days when computers had cranks and networks were steam powered. He has been a writer and editor for many of the most influential publications over the years – publications that helped shape our current technological zeitgeist. He has lost count of the number of articles, blogs, reviews, rants, and books that he has published over the years, but he hasn’t stopped learning and writing about new things.


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