The e-commerce giant Amazon has announced that it has suffered a major data breach in which names and email addresses of its registered customers have been exposed on its website – The incident occurred a few days before Black Friday.
The company did not reveal what exactly happened, how many users were impacted or what’s their location. However, it did say that the incident wasn’t a cyber attack but a technical error in which exposed names and emails of their users on its website.
According to the email: “A number of affected Amazon customers have received a brief email stating that “We are contacting you to let you know that our site has inadvertently revealed your email due to a technical error. The problem has been fixed. This was not the result of anything you did, and you do not have to change your password or take any other action.”
“Amazon takes all security-related matters very seriously and your account security is our top priority. We have policies and security measures in place to ensure that your personal information remains secure,” the email concluded.
If you are an Amazon customer and received email notification about the breach change your password right now. Remember, you might be using an old password on your account that may have been leaked in a previous data breach which makes your account an easy target for hackers.
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— 𝙚𝙓 𝘾𝟬𝙣 (Kevin) (@YaBoyKevinnn) November 21, 2018
Since BlackFriday and Thanksgiving are a few hours away, the timing of the breach could affect Amazon’s sales. On the other hand, the company can end up with heavy fines under The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
Amazon is not new to such incidents, in 2016, Amazon Marketplace data from a 3rd-party server was stolen and sold on an underground forum for BTC 0.02. The same year in October, Amazon sent emails to its registered customers urging them to change their passwords after discovering a list of email addresses and passwords posted online.
Last year, Amazon Web Services suffered a massive outage that took popular sites offline around the world. The very next day it was revealed that the actual reason behind the breakdown was not a cyber attack but a typo error. The company admitted that one of their engineers caused the error.