Cyber Hackers steal 5 Million Gmail Passwords
There are cyber hackers all over the Internet, looking for ways to illegally obtain and use the personal information of others. Most of the time, hackers tend to target one individual at a time. Recently, however, a technologically savvy individual managed to steal five million Gmail addresses and passwords. This individual then loaded all of the information onto a Russian Bitcoin forum. For many people who have Gmail and other Google accounts, this can be a bit nerve-racking. However, it not necessarily as bad as one might think.
Right off the bat, hearing that five million Gmail account names and passwords have been stolen triggers a sense of fear. While this is an extremely large number, the vast majority of these are extremely old and outdated passwords. In addition, many of the accounts are no longer in use. The fact is the five million accounts and passwords is more of a collection of passwords that appeared over time and a user simply collected and stored all of the information together.
Google does not have any evidence of a breach in their own system, and as of right now, it is not possible to tell if the list is even that credible, or if someone simply generated the information on their own in order to try to sell to bidders over the Internet.
Despite the fact that the information is either old or, more than likely, not real, Google locked out anyone who’s email appeared in the leak. For anyone who does have such an email account, they are directed to a new website where they are instructed to restart and reset their password. Through the possible breach and loss of usernames and passwords, Google has also released information to individuals regarding how often they should reset their passwords and how to create a stronger password, in order to help prevent outside individuals from taking their information.
If you have attempted to log into your Gmail account and have not been directed to a new page, prompting you to update your password, chances are you are not affected at all. However, if you want to check whether or not your account has been accessed or not, Google is going to be providing a website that allows individuals to see if their email account appeared on the list or not.