Updating your Twitter Password Isn’t Enough

twitterhack


By Bill Pytlovany

Updating your Twitter Password Isn’t Enough

It happens so often that many of you probably ignore the newest reports of a bank or web service being hacked and personal information being stolen. Most news stations probably have a macro they can just fill in the variables that looks like “Today was the victim of hackers. Information including name, passwords, credit card information, and for more than customers was stolen and is now being sold online to other hacker groups.”

Most companies do little to notify customers and have a policy to reduce the severity perception of any attack. The common response is “No indication of customer data being abused has been reported”. In severe cases a company may offer free credit report monitoring for a year to their customers. Unfortunately, this typically requires you to sign up using a credit card and unless you remember to cancel you’ll automatically be renewed and charged for any future years.

Twitter says “attack was not the work of amateurs…”

Today, the public news report is that information from approximately 250,000 Twitter accounts was stolen. Twitter has taken action but I recommend you do more than just change your password. Even if you don’t use Twitter this attack may still affect you.

Immediately try to sign on Twitter and change your password. If your account was compromised Twitter may have already changed your password and you won’t be able to sign on. Don’t keep trying to sign on or you may be blocked. Even if you weren’t a victim, tell Twitter to send you a password reset link to your associated Email address. Check your Email and create a new password that you’ll remember and is different than your current password.

Important: If you used your Twitter password or even something similar on other services like Facebook, start going to all the other services you use and change your password. I know keeping track of passwords is hard but hackers know you share passwords.

The bad guys have automated tools which are now trying to use your Twitter Email and password to access Facebook, Google+, Gmail, Pinterest, Microsoft Live, LinkedIn, Instagram, WordPress, BlogSpot and even GoDaddy.

When you reset your password be sure to verify all the email accounts and cell phone numbers which are associated with your account. A hacker will add contact information so they’ll be able to re-reset your password and no matter how many times you change your password, they’ll still have it.

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This post is excerpted with Bill’s permission from his blog

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2 thoughts on “Updating your Twitter Password Isn’t Enough

  1. I agree with Jimmy. Use a password manager. I’ve been using RoboForm for several years, but there are others out there as well.

  2. “Important: If you used your Twitter password or even something similar on other services like Facebook, start going to all the other services you use and change your password. I know keeping track of passwords is hard but hackers know you share passwords.”

    What I am about to say is harsh…. With all the articles written about easy passwords in both the geek press and the rest of the media, anyone who still uses 12345678 as a password or anyone who still reuses passwords, deserves every hack they get.

    Noone has to remember a single password.
    There are many password managers that are free to download and use. You only have to remember one STRONG password. Each account you have must have STRONG, UNIQUE, LONG passwords. I use a 32-character password. If you don’t want to remember passwords, then write them down at home and only logon from home. If you want the convenience of logging in from your phone or another computer, then you must do work to keep your password safe.

    A STRONG password is one with numbers, upper & lower case letters, and special characters. I realize that some websites are are lazy and won’t let you use long passwords or special character. You just have to go with the flow. The most important thing is to use UNIQUE passwords, at the very least.

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