Why you should always deactivate and delete online accounts, you don’t use anymore

Recent reports have indicated that close to 33 GB dataset that contained more than 360 million account credential from MySpace has surfaced online. The leaked data appeared to date 2008 and 2009 and was a record 360,213,024 email addresses, usernames, and passwords. The massive credentials were supposedly swiped from MySpace in hacks conducted back in 2013, just before the company redesign and close security gaps.

Before Facebook came, MySpace was the primary social media site. The site still has details on more user accounts than residences of the U.S. Being one of the first such platforms many people probably were unaware of essential security measure e.g. using a different email and password for social activity and others for online banking and shopping.

In a Tuesday blog post by MySpace, the company noted that it had disabled the affected password, and no one could use the credential to gain unauthorized access to accounts. The company never detailed how many accounts in the hack were active in the sense that some people were still using them. The chances are that some of the accounts had not been used for years, but users who are commonly using a single password and email for every online service are vulnerable.

MySpace blamed the incident on Peace – a branded Russian Cyberhacker and made it clear that the affected credentials were created before June 11, 2013. Though old and seem outdated, the personal data from the site was retailing to approximately thousands of dollars, highlighting the value outdated information can have.

In the light of this hack, it only seems appropriate for us to deactivate and delete unused accounts or even just create a throwaway email address for social activities. This will help reduce the number of credentials you have to remember and help limit your exposure to hackers. By just changing credential on old accounts and disassociating them from online service, you will ensure none of your other internet identities is put at risk.

Featured Image Credits:ibtimes


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