The month June, of the year 2016 has witnessed three of the Tech elites going down in the subtle fight against Hackers. It has just been three weeks since the social media accounts of Facebook’s CEO got hacked, and now the CEO of the largest search engine -Google, has gone to the same fate.
Sundar Pichai’s Quora account got hacked on 27th June, 2016. And since the account was directly connected with Pichai’s Twitter account, the whole exploit had become known to all 508,000 of his followers, instantly. Though, the updates have now been removed, here is the screenshot from both the social sites.
The claim for both the exploits is taken by the same group of hackers ‘OurMine’. It is noteworthy that the group has been in the spotlight for some time now and had broken into the social media accounts of former Twitter CEOs Ev Williams and Dick Costolo, some famous Youtubers, founder of Spotify- Daniel Ek, Writer Matthew Yglesias, activist Anil Dash, and many other celebrities.
It is clear that the group is aiming at the accounts of the people with public prominence, to bring itself into the limelight. It is definitely not clear to which category the group belongs to. For it is neither using the exploit for harmful reasons (Black-hat hackers) nor are they helping the people whose accounts they are hacking (White-hat hackers). Let’s say they belong to “Grey hat” class with a dominating darker side.
That being said, the group deserves some credit as it has never been sly about its objective, which is to promote their vulnerability detection and fixture services. However, the path they have chosen for the purpose is not at all appropriate. This inadmissible course of action has led them into the bad books of tech execs.
It all began with...
The group might have been active for quite some time, but the first time it got itself in the news is when it hacked the Mark Zuckerberg’s Twitter account. The breach that led to the hacking of the account was embarrassingly easy.
Recently, when the credentials of around 157 million LinkedIn profiles were compromised, Mark got himself exposed. The password he used for his LinkedIn profile, was also the one that goes with his Twitter and Pinterest account. Moreover, the infamous password wasn’t a great combination of special characters and numbers either, it was literally flimsy and goes like ‘dadada’ upto 26 characters.
To know how to safeguard your password read this..
Though it was the LinkedIn rupture that exposed the password, it was weak enough to get cracked by a brute force attack within 25 seconds. All in all, it was this simplistic breach that brought OurMine into spotlight. However, that seems to be one of the easiest targets of the group, as now it has broken into numerous social media accounts, a good number of which belongs to famous celebs.
With the increasing use of social media accounts, every user, whether they are CEOs of some eminent organization or not, are vulnerable to the attacks from hackers. And since OurMine is not the only hacker out there, one can never be too careful. So, be diligent when it comes to protecting your computer from spyware, adware, scams, and other such harmful threats that can expose you to the class of black hat hackers. Use strong antivirus software, and ensure the reliability of your password manager. Wish you safe browsing!