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eBay urges users to change passwords after database breach

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ebaylogoeBay members have been told to change their passwords after the online auction site revealed its database had been breached by hackers.

Information like user names, passwords, encrypted passwords, email address, physical address, phone numbers and dates of birth of some of the 145 million active users worldwide have been seen by the cyber attackers.

eBay said in a statement it has not found any evidence that any financial information has been compromised but has still urged members to change their passwords as a precaution.

eBay says there is no evidence PayPal – the company’s online secure payment system – was exposed in the breach.

The attack took place between late February and early March but it wasn’t until earlier this month that eBay discovered the intrusion.

“The eBay cyber-attack could have been worse had the financial data been kept together with the passwords and personal customer information,” says Lysa Myers, security researcher at digital protection company ESET.

“However, because the database also included eBay users’ name, email address, physical address, phone number and date of birth, this breach does open up the possibility for other types of scams such as phishing attempts.

The notice on the eBay site today

“As such, eBay users should be advised to be on the lookout for suspicious messages, and avoid clicking on links in email.

“Whenever in doubt, go directly to the site by typing its URL into the browser rather than by following links in emails.”

eBay’s site was down periodically today as it struggled to cope with the volume of users flooding the site to change their passwords.

To change your passwords on eBay click on your name in the top left corner which appears after you’ve logged in.

From here go to Account Settings and in the left hand column click on Personal Information.

“If you are an eBay user, this would be a good time to make sure your new password is a very strong one, and unique from your other online accounts,” added Myers.

“If you have not yet started using a password manager, this could be a good time, as they can be very helpful in creating and maintaining strong passwords for each online account you use.”

To see any customer updates from eBay you can go here.

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