Thursday, September 11, 2014

Five million reasons to better protect your online accounts

Five million. Five million viewers watched the first episode of TV series "The Closer" on its release in USA. Five million is also the number of copies of "Who Made Who" album sold by the rock band AC / DC. The age of Santa Cruz Islands, discovered by the Spanish navigator Álvaro de Mendaña in the Pacific, is also five million years. Five million dollars was the reward offered the FBI and D.E.A. for the capture of Colombian drug lord Juan Carlos Ramirez Abadia.

Now we can add to previous figures the five million Gmail accounts leaked to the Russian Bitcoin Security online forum. The user who posted the list of emails also claims that he has their passwords, which 60% of them are valid. To give you an idea of ​​the scale of this theft, it is almost equivalent to the population of the metropolitan area of ​​Miami.

Meanwhile Google says that these user credentials were not obtained by any infiltration into its systems, but by alternative methods. However, the company assures that it has protected the accounts affected by this incident and has advised users to change their passwords.

Phishing is one of those alternative techniques, which basically involves tricking users to enter their username and password on a fake site. In fact, cybercriminals are increasingly using more sophisticated methods so their false webpages avoid being detected by the security tools. According to Symantec, some phishers have begun to implement AES encryption on these fake pages in order to obfuscate the phishing code.

In any case, all those who want to check if their Google account is among the five million leaked can do so on "Is Leaked?" website ( Anyway, we all should learn the lesson, change our password for a stronger one and enable two steps verification. Dual Authentication prevents a stranger can access your account with just your username and password. These systems usually detect if the connection is from a place or an unusual device and alert the user.

This type of security measures is common in the financial sector, which for obvious reasons is one of the most cyber attacked ones every year. In fact, in Spain, their number increased by 27.6% last year up to 28.4 million, according to the "Multi-device security habits" report by Kaspersky Lab.

Today we have five million reasons more to stay well informed, so we invite you to follow us through our social channels (find the links at the right sidebar) or our blog.


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