Many of our readers may remember Yahoo’s infamous security breach. Over 3 billion accounts suffered the biggest data breach in history. The data stolen included names, phone numbers, passwords, and email addresses. 2 years later, Yahoo has agreed to pay $50 million in damages to the affected users. Read on to learn the full story.
Yahoo to Pay $50 Million to Users Affected By Biggest Security Breach
Yahoo and the $50 Million Settlement – The Full Story
2 years ago, Yahoo endured 2 separate attacks that affected almost all of its user base. The first breach impacted every single Yahoo account (3 billion). Yahoo’s source code was accessed, and the attackers were able to access any account they wanted even if they couldn’t find the passwords.
The second attack affected 500 million accounts. Names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords, and even security questions and their answers were all stolen during the breach.
The biggest problem that came out of all of this was that Yahoo decided not to inform the public of these breaches until 2016, even though both lapses in security happened between 2013-2014. Obviously, their lack of transparency didn’t go over so well with the public. For all intents and purposes, Yahoo signed its own death statement when it opted not to share this information with its users.
And so, a day after Yahoo released the news of the hack, one Ronald Schwartz decided to file a lawsuit against Yahoo on behalf of all of its affected users. Two years later and Yahoo is finally settling to pay $50 million to the users affected by their negligence.
The Settlement – What Yahoo Agreed to
Yahoo’s settlement goes something like this:
Yahoo to pay half of the $50 million.
Verizon will pay the rest (mother-company).
Users will receive $25 an hour for the time spent handling the losses they endured after the breach.
All users must have documentation to receive the payment.
Premium Yahoo users are eligible for a 25% refund on their payments for the service.
Yahoo will offer 2 years of free credit-monitoring services for all users through AllClear.
For now, users are waiting till November 29th to find out if the settlement will be active or not. If the hearing on the 29th results in a federal court approval of the settlement, it would mean the end of a 2-year long lawsuit. If the settlement is approved, Yahoo will send out notification emails to all affected account holders. It will also publish the news in People magazine and National Geographic.
Yahoo Settlement – Final Thoughts
It is always good for internet users to see that big tech companies can be punished for messing with your personal data. What with our current cybersecurity problems, less and fewer tech giants take responsibility for risking the privacy and security of their users. While Yahoo’s breach is absolutely unforgivable, the fact that Yahoo is trying to make things better means that there might be hope for our privacy in the future.
A reader, writer, and avid internet user. Hiba has spent the better part of her adult life looking for ways to have a safer and more user-friendly online experience, all while praising the uses of VPN connections to anyone who would listen.