Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Threat Intelligence

12/4/2018
03:00 PM
50%
50%

Quora Breach Exposes Information of 100 Million Users

The massive breach has exposed passwords for millions who didn't remember having a Quora account.

Quora, a website that provides answers to natural-language queries, announced that its membership database has been breached, exposing information for approximately 100 million individuals to criminals.

According to the company's disclosure, exposed information includes:

  • Account information, e.g. name, email address, encrypted (hashed) password, data imported from linked networks when authorized by users
  • Public content and actions, e.g. questions, answers, comments, and upvotes
  • Non-public content and actions, e.g. answer requests, downvotes, and direct messages

Quora told affected users that the risk of long-term harm is low because the company collects no payment or deeply personal information from any account holder. Judging from Twitter activity around the breach, one of the most surprising facts for many account holders was the fact that they have an account on Quora; many had apparently signed on to answer a single question, then forgotten that they had the account at all.

Ryan Wilk, vice president of customer success for NuData Security, a Mastercard company, said in response to the breach, "Stolen information, such as names, email addresses and passwords, combined with other user data from other breaches and social media, builds a complete profile. Every hack has a snowball effect that far outlasts the initial breach."

For those affected by the breach, the disclosure of their information could have an impact that extends far beyond Quora itself. Ben Johnson, co-founder and CTO of Obsidian Security, said, "The Quora breach is a powerful reminder about the perils of password reuse. Many of the compromised accounts belong to users who haven’t been active for years. Reusing the same password puts sensitive data across all accounts at risk if a single breach occurs — even if it’s a service they haven’t used in years."

Among the facts not yet known is how regulators in the US and Europe will view the breach. The financial impact could be considerable, as Chris Olson, CEO of The Media Trust explains. "Now that [the EU General Data Protection Regulation] is in force, California’s Consumer Privacy Act has been passed, and a new federal consumer privacy bill has been proposed that threatens to imprison CEOs for inaccurate or incomplete reporting on data processes, companies must get to know all their third parties and ensure those third parties' activities fall within company policies for data security and privacy. Most third parties operate under the radar, posing known and unknown threats to companies' top and bottom lines."

For more, read here and here.

Dark Reading's Quick Hits delivers a brief synopsis and summary of the significance of breaking news events. For more information from the original source of the news item, please follow the link provided in this article. View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Why Cyber-Risk Is a C-Suite Issue
Marc Wilczek, Digital Strategist & CIO Advisor,  11/12/2019
6 Small-Business Password Managers
Curtis Franklin Jr., Senior Editor at Dark Reading,  11/8/2019
Unreasonable Security Best Practices vs. Good Risk Management
Jack Freund, Director, Risk Science at RiskLens,  11/13/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
Navigating the Deluge of Security Data
In this Tech Digest, Dark Reading shares the experiences of some top security practitioners as they navigate volumes of security data. We examine some examples of how enterprises can cull this data to find the clues they need.
Flash Poll
Rethinking Enterprise Data Defense
Rethinking Enterprise Data Defense
Frustrated with recurring intrusions and breaches, cybersecurity professionals are questioning some of the industrys conventional wisdom. Heres a look at what theyre thinking about.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2013-4108
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-14
Multiple unspecified vulnerabilities in Cryptocat Project Cryptocat 2.0.18 have unknown impact and attack vectors.
CVE-2018-12207
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-14
Improper invalidation for page table updates by a virtual guest operating system for multiple Intel(R) Processors may allow an authenticated user to potentially enable denial of service of the host system via local access.
CVE-2019-0117
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-14
Insufficient access control in protected memory subsystem for Intel(R) SGX for 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th Generation Intel(R) Core(TM) Processor Families; Intel(R) Xeon(R) Processor E3-1500 v5, v6 Families; Intel(R) Xeon(R) E-2100 & E-2200 Processor Families with Intel(R) Processor Graphics may allow a ...
CVE-2019-0123
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-14
Insufficient memory protection in Intel(R) 6th Generation Core Processors and greater, supporting SGX, may allow a privileged user to potentially enable escalation of privilege via local access.
CVE-2019-0124
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-14
Insufficient memory protection in Intel(R) 6th Generation Core Processors and greater, supporting TXT, may allow a privileged user to potentially enable escalation of privilege via local access.