Quora discloses major breach that affects 100 million users

Quora announced on Monday that personal information of users may have been compromised

Question-and-answer website Quora said on Monday (Dec 3) its user data had been compromised, with about 100 million users affected by the security breach.

Quora said they discovered the hack on Friday, November 30, but didn't say when the actual breach happened.

Quora, like many sites today, offer the option to log in with a Google or Facebook account, which may have been the "linked networks" that their blog is referring to.

Compromised information includes hashed passwords, user names, email addressed, questions and answers, as well as data imported from linked networks.

Quora is still investigating the exact cause of the breach, and has acquired the services of digital forensics teams to assist in this process. Other information exposed included public content such as questions, answers and comments, as well as nonpublic content such as downvotes and direct messages.

The company will now notify users whose data has been compromised, and will invalidate passwords for users who use one to sign in. Quora also notified law enforcement.

A less useful decision by Quora: the company didn't elaborate on the format of the stolen password data except to say that it was "encrypted", by which it probably means the passwords were passed through a one-way hash function.

Quora said it's highly unlikely that the hack will lead to identity theft as the site does not collect sensitive personal information such as credit card or social security numbers. If the incident has irked you enough to delete your Quora account, you can find out how to do so here, and also learn about resetting your password and obtaining a copy of your data from the site on this attack FAQ page. "We have already taken steps to ensure the situation is contained, and we are working to prevent this type of event from happening in the future".

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