If you follow Komando.com for all your breaking tech news, and I know that you do, you're well aware of the excessive amount of data breaches that are constantly happening. Let's face it, stealing confidential information that's sitting in a database can be a lucrative operation for hackers.
That's why cybercriminals are always looking for companies with lax security to take advantage of. You guessed it, we have another breach to warn you about and this one left critical data exposed for months.
How criminals could have your banking information
What's happening is, a database with critical information on over 100,000 customers was left exposed for six months. Researchers discovered that the popular online pet retailer, FuturePets.com, used an insecure server while synchronizing files between multiple computers.
The researchers who discovered the exposure notified the retailer back in November of 2016, but they never received a reply. The data was left exposed until just a couple weeks ago, so it was open for anyone to steal for at least six months.
The unprotected data included:
- Customer names
- Shipping addresses
- Credit and debit card details - This included 16-digit numbers, expiration dates and cardholder names
- Email addresses
- Phone numbers
- Plain-text passwords
The good news is, the data is now protected. The bad new is, it's unknown how many cybercriminals got their hands on the information during the breach. Keep reading to find out what you need to do now.
How you should respond after a data breach
- Keep an eye on your bank accounts - You should already be frequently checking your bank statements, looking for suspicious activity. It's even more critical when credit card data has been exposed through a data breach. If you see anything that seems strange, report it immediately.
- Set up two-factor authentication - Two-factor authentication, also known as two-step verification, means that to log into your account, you need two ways to prove you are who you say you are. It's like the DMV or bank asking for two forms of ID. Click here to learn how to set up two-factor authentication.
- Investigate your email address - Have I Been Pwned is an easy-to-use site with a database of information that hackers and malicious programs have released publicly. It monitors hacker sites and collects new data every five to 10 minutes about the latest hacks and exposures.
- Change your password - Whenever you hear news of a data breach, it's a good idea to change your account passwords. Read this article to help you create hack-proof passwords.
- Close unused accounts - Here's an easy way to manage all of your online accounts at once.
- Beware of phishing scams - Scammers will try and piggyback on data breaches like this. They will create phishing emails, pretending to be from the affected site, hoping to get victims to click on malicious links that could lead to more problems. Take our phishing IQ test to see if you can spot a fake email.
- Manage passwords - Many people use the same username and password on multiple sites. This is a terrible practice and you should never do it. If you're using the same credentials on multiple sites, change them to make them unique. If you have too many accounts to remember, you could always use a password manager.