Cybercriminals can simultaneously target thousands of people with simplistic schemes to steal information or banking details. But they also go after large companies. The hack on Colonial Pipeline last year demonstrated their tenacity. Unfortunately, the streaming media service Plex is now also a cybercrime statistic.
In addition to letting you stream a selection of free films, the service is an excellent media player platform for streaming your content from wherever you are. Many use Plex to watch movies or listen to music stored on a network device.
Unfortunately, Plex recently suffered a massive data breach. Read on to find out how this happened and what you should do immediately.
Here’s the backstory
Plex sent an email this week, telling users it noticed “suspicious activity” on one of its databases. Plex said it “does appear that a third-party was able to access” a small portion of its database.
According to the warning, hackers managed to tunnel their way through sophisticated cybersecurity to steal emails, usernames, and encrypted passwords. The number of compromised accounts is unknown, but Plex says it’s “out of an abundance of caution” that it’s urging users to change their passwords.
The platform has around 13 million monthly active users. As for what happens now, the company is investigating the breach to understand better how this happened. In addition, Plex hashed all the passwords in a secure database, so it will be challenging for hackers to disseminate the information. But you should still take action.
“We’ve already addressed the method that this third-party employed to gain access to the system, and we’re doing additional reviews to ensure that the security of all of our systems is further hardened to prevent future incursions,” Plex explains.
What you can do about it
This hack is another example of why you must change your passwords often. In addition to never using the same password for different websites, you should change your credentials at least once every six months. Here are more tips to stay protected from this and any data breach:
- If you have a Plex account, you must change your password immediately. You can do this by logging in to your profile, clicking on the drop-down arrow and clicking on Account Settings. From there, scroll down to Security and click Edit in the Password box.
- Create strong, original passwords for all your accounts and don’t reuse any. Can’t keep track of all your unique passwords? Just use a password manager. Tap or click here to get started.
- Plex offers two-factor authentication, which is a smart choice to activate. The extra verification step prevents unauthorized people from accessing your account. To enable it, click the Enable button in the Two-Factor Authentication box.
- Watch for phishing emails claiming to have details on the Plex data breach. Clicking links or downloading attachments from unsolicited emails could infect your device with malware or cause other cybersecurity problems.
- Check haveibeenpwned.com. Enter your email address into this online database to reveal which data breaches you might be involved in.