10:20 21st Nov, 2019
Disney+ Goes Live and So Does Its User Data
Early reports of the new member on the ever-growing OTT were anything but encouraging and things just got worse as hackers struck and are blatantly offering user details for a cost
While fans in India are eagerly awaiting Disney+ to join the online streaming battle, reports across the geographies where it went live suggests that it isn’t quite the Netflix killer that one anticipated though there is no doubt that the content is quite engaging. And, proof is the frenetic pace at which the newest entrant to the OTT journey has reached 10 million subscribers.
However, ironically this seems to be turning into a challenge for Disney+ accounts have reportedly been hacked and the culprits are offering the data for prices varying from 3$ to 11$, says a report published on ZDNet.com. It says that the hacking began within hours of Disney+ getting launched on November 12 with some of the data even being offered for free on hacking forums.
The service, which is currently available in the United States, Canada and the Netherlands, was reportedly marred by technical issues as many users initially complained that they were unable to stream their favorite movies and shows. Amidst this brouhaha, there was a smaller bunch that complained about losing their accounts, says the ZDNet article quoting users on social media.
The article said users reported that hackers accessed their accounts and logged them out of all devices before changing their email and passwords. Some confirmed that they had used unique names for Disney+ while others said they had re-used passwords which suggests that hackers may have gained access using email-password combinations leaked by other websites whereas in the case of Disney+ it could have been obtained through malware.
Responding to the latest instance of hackers shutting out legitimate users from their accounts, Niels Schweisshelm, Technical Program Manager at HackerOne, says, “It’s no surprise that cybercriminals jump on the same bandwagon as everyone else when there’s a big new consumer launch. The scale of fresh accounts means it’s very much worth their while to invest in attempting to compromise them – cybercriminals can rely on consumers’ security apathy to give them an easy win.”
In an email response to Techtree.com, he said the research should act as a reminder to all consumers about the importance of securing online accounts with strong, complex passwords. The trouble is, Passwords are the worst option for secure authentication, but we don’t yet have anything better.
For the foreseeable future, people will have to continue making passwords work for them, whether that is using personal algorithms to keep track of them or using password managers. Organisations can do their part by implementing and pushing or even mandating two-factor authentication so that even if passwords are breached, the damage is contained.
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