National Consumers League

National Consumers League statement on Myspace data breach


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June 7, 2016

Contact: NCL Communications, Cindy Hoang, cindyh@nclnet.org, (202) 207-2832

Washington, DC—In the wake of a reportedly record-setting breach of 360 million accounts at Myspace, the National Consumers League is advising current and former users of the social networking site to change the passwords on sensitive accounts, particularly if they reused their Myspace account credentials across multiple websites. NCL is also advising Myspace users to remain vigilant for possible phishing attacks in the coming weeks.

The following statement is attributable to John Breyault, NCL vice president of public policy, telecommunications, and fraud:

“The Myspace data breach is possibly the largest password breach in history and comes directly on the heels of a large data breach at LinkedIn where 167 million account credentials were compromised. In the coming weeks, consumers should be on the lookout for phishing emails which are typically utilized by hackers in the aftermath of data breaches. These emails may bear the official Myspace logo, and will lure individuals  to fake websites to collect further personal data in the hopes of stealing their identity, or will direct users to click on virus laden links by posing as a breach notification email.”

“The recent slew of data breaches highlights the continued necessity for Congressional action to keep consumers’ data safe. NCL continues to urge Congress to pass long-stalled legislation that creates a floor of protections for consumers and require organizations to notify data breach victims as soon as a breach occurs so that consumers can take the necessary steps to protect their identity.” 

To safeguard their data, NCL recommends that consumers take steps to protect themselves including:

  1. Do not reuse passwords across different websites.  Reusing passwords allows hackers access to several accounts should one account be compromised by a data breach.
  2. If old accounts at websites like Myspace are no longer being used, it is advisable to delete them. To learn how to delete a Myspace account, click here.
  3. Opt-in to multi-factor authentication whenever possible. TwoFactorAuth.org is a good resource for finding out which services offer multi-factor authentication to their users.
  4. Use strong, tough to break passwords. Strong passwords are longer and utilize both uppercase and lowercase letters as well as numbers.

NCL's flagship consumer fraud education website, Fraud.org, features a “Latest Breaches” section, a resource where consumers can find dependable information about particular breaches, including links to official information from the breached entities and tips to protect sensitive data after a breach. Check it out here.

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About the National Consumers League

The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America's pioneer consumer organization. Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.