Dropbox hacked, user details pilfered for spam attacks

Dropbox has admitted that hackers got hold of an internal document listing users' account details, and unleashed a spam attack.

Dropbox is the latest big name to be hacked. The cloud storage service has admitted that hackers got hold of an internal document listing users' account details, and unleashed a spam attack.

Dropbox confirms a 'small number' of users have had their Dropbox accounts breached by hackers. The service claims that the usernames and passwords were stolen from another site and used by wrong'uns to access the online storage accounts.

But somehow ne'er-do-wells also managed to get into a Dropbox employee's account, getting their hands on an internal project document listing user email addresses.

These addresses were then hit with spam. Affected users knew the spam originated from a problem at Dropbox because the unwanted messages flooded email accounts only associated with their Dropbox account.

Dropbox promises to introduce two-factor authentication in the next few weeks, so you need to enter two identifying elements such as a password and a temporary code sent to your phone. Other security measures include mechanisms within the site that try and automatically spot suspect behaviour, and a new page that shows you details of all the recent occasions that someone has logged into your account.

The fact that the user details were culled from other sites highlights the importance of using different passwords for all your different online accounts, even if it is a pain in the Dropbox.

Business-minded social network LinkedIn was recently hacked, while the PlayStation Network has had more security issues after last year's catastrophic breach . Meanwhile a hacker was jailed for eight months earlier this year for breaking into Facebook.

Have you been affected by the Dropbox hack? How do you remember your online account details? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.

About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.


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