Thursday, January 2, 2014

Were You Hacked on Snapchat? Here's a Search Engine to Find Out

Posted By on Thu, Jan 2, 2014 at 9:41 AM

Snapchat users are beginning to learn if their phone numbers or other personal data were among the 4.6 million account details that were reportedly hacked over the New Year holiday.

Unidentified hackers say they carried out an attack on Snapchat "to raise awareness of a security loophole in the database of the social media application."

In a statement emailed to the website TechCrunch, the alleged hackers wrote:

"Our motivation behind the release was to raise the public awareness around the issue. It is understandable that tech start-ups have limited resources but security and privacy should not be a secondary goal. Security matters as much as user experience does. You wouldn't want to eat at a restaurant that spend millions on decoration, but barely anything on cleanliness."

The hack came just days after a blog post in which Snapshot referenced a flaw posted on Christmas Eve by Gibson Security that alleged it could match thousands of phone numbers to usernames every few minutes. Snapchat wrote, ""Theoretically, if someone were able to upload a huge set of phone numbers, like every number in an area code, or every possible number in the U.S., they could create a database of the results and match usernames to phone numbers that way."

A message on Gibson's website said: "Are you part of the recent 4.6 million Snapchat user leak? Let's hope not. Enter your username below to find out."

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