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cox communications data breach
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Security & privacy

Major ISP and cable company breached – And you’ll never believe how

If you are a customer of Cox Communications, your data may have been exposed. The company revealed that it suffered a security breach, and customer data was compromised. Tap or click here for details on a recent GoDaddy breach that exposed 1.2 million user profiles.

Cox Communications provides customers with cable TV, internet and home phone service. It is the third-largest cable television provider in the country, with around 3 million customers.

If the breach impacted you, you should receive a letter from Cox notifying you through snail mail. In the meantime, read on for details on the breach and ways to protect your data.

Here’s the backstory

The company has been relatively tight-lipped as to what exactly happened, only divulging that an impersonator accessed its systems. Customers of Cox were sent letters this week, explaining that the breach occurred in October.

The cable provider said that “an unknown person(s) had impersonated a Cox agent” through a social engineering attack and managed to access a small number of customer accounts. With the company servicing around 6 million total customers, it is unclear what number is considered small.

The letter from the Chief Compliance and Privacy Officer of Cox Communications said steps had been put in place after discovering the breach. The company added that the affected customers have had their accounts secured, and the local law enforcement agencies have been contacted.

Cox determined through an internal investigation that the hackers accessed some customers’ data, including:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Telephone number
  • Cox account number
  • Cox.net email address
  • Username
  • PIN code
  • Account security questions and answers
  • Types of services received from Cox

This information is precious to cybercriminals. It’s much of the information that hackers would need to commit fraud.

As of now, Cox hasn’t said payment accounts were accessed by criminals but is advising customers to keep an eye on their bank accounts, looking for suspicious activity. If you see anything suspicious on your accounts, report it to your financial institution ASAP.

What you can do about it

If you suspect that your details were exposed, you must immediately change your username and password, especially if you use the same across multiple platforms.

Another good idea is to change your security questions. It’s OK to give false answers for those so cybercriminals can’t find them on social media. Just make sure you remember them.

Here are some more steps to take:

  • Beware of potential phishing emails hitting your inbox. Scammers piggyback on breaches like these by sending malicious emails in hopes of tricking victims into clicking their links. This could lead to all types of other problems.
  • Keep an eye on your banking statements for any unusual transactions. If you see anything strange, notify your bank immediately.
  • Enable two-factor authentication (2FA) for your Cox account and any other online accounts that offer it. This will make it more difficult for hackers to access your accounts. Tap or click here to find out how 2FA protects you.

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