Yahoo Mail was hacked this week adding the web based email system to a long list of other internet services that have been hacked into and compromised in the last year by nefarious cyber attackers. In a blog post Thursday night issues by Yahoo, the company revealed that revealed that a number of users' passwords and usernames had been obtained via a malicious computer software which was able to gain access to lists of Yahoo Mail credentials. This comes just weeks after Yahoo's advertising servers were found to have been distributing malware to hundreds of thousands of users as the result of a malicious attack by attackers who took control of Yahoo's advertising network for their own unscrupulous purposes.
Here is an excerpt from the post by Yahoo concerning the hacked Yahoo mail accounts:
"Recently, we identified a coordinated effort to gain unauthorized access to Yahoo Mail accounts. Upon discovery, we took immediate action to protect our users, prompting them to reset passwords on impacted accounts.
Based on our current findings, the list of usernames and passwords that were used to execute the attack was likely collected from a third-party database compromise. We have no evidence that they were obtained directly from Yahoo's systems. Our ongoing investigation shows that malicious computer software used the list of usernames and passwords to access Yahoo Mail accounts. The information sought in the attack seems to be names and email addresses from the affected accounts' most recent sent emails."
WATCH: Feds Investigate Widespread Hack Into Yahoo Email Accounts
If your Yahoo Mail account was broken into, the company has taken a few steps to ensure your security is restored by sending notification e-mails that instruct users who's Yahoo Mail accounts have been broken into to change their passwords. In addition, some users may also receive a text message with a reminder to change passwords if mobile information has been shared or linked to the hacked Yahoo Mail account.
In addition to changing the password on your Yahoo account, here are some other things you should do if you discover your Yahoo mail account has been hacked.
What To Do If Your Yahoo Email Account Was Hacked
1) As much as it may seem a pain, if your Yahoo Mail account has been hacked, you should make sure to change log-in credentials for any account that may share your Yahoo password. This is especially true if the login in credentials use the same Yahoo emails as their username. For example, I know many of us use a similar user name on Facebook as that of the Yahoo email, or may have even signed up for Facebook through Yahoo way back in the days before Gmail.
2) Taking the Facebook/Gmail connection a bit further you're your Yahoo Mail account has been hacked and you have a similar user name at Gmail or Twitter or any other social networking site, it would be a good idea to change that information as well. Rest assured, hackers are definitely intelligent enough to try to maximize their conquests through the simple effort of trying similar user names and passwords across platforms and web services, betting on the chance that we've streamlined them all.
3) Finally, now that Yahoo Mail accounts have been hacked, anyone - both those who were subject to the attack and other Yahoo users - should be aware of possible spam. Though your Yahoo Mail account might not have been hacked, if you have a friend who was and your email was in their Contacts, your likely to be affected at the very least by span as the attackers appear to have picked up names and e-mail addresses of the most recent contacts emailed or messaged from the hacked accounts. With that in mind, be wary of any odd e-mails from the Yahoo contacts and never and click on any links inside of messages.
Was your Yahoo Email account hacked? Share with us your experience in the comments below.