Online reputation site must defend itself after losing customer data
Online reputation services have a special responsibility to keep clients safe. How can you protect yourself when the very company you rely on is breached?
Would you trust a site with your personal information after it suffered a breach? What if that site’s sole purpose is to protect your reputation?
helps its members maintain a reputable online profile, but the site’s own profile was damaged by a recent data breach that led to the exposure of customer information. Although no Social Security numbers or financial information was lost, names, email addresses, and physical addresses were exposed. It’s been reported that some dates of birth, phone numbers, and occupational information were also lost. A “small minority” of customer accounts had hashed and salted passwords stolen.
Hashing’ passwords is the process of using algorithms to change customers’ passwords to a unique data string. The ‘salt’ adds more characters to produce a unique data fingerprint. The company has notified all customers of the breach and reset passwords to protect them. But Reputation.com
is not alone in being hacked recently. LivingSocial, a daily-deal website, was breached, affecting 50 million customers.
Maintaining our online reputation is important to us and the internet, social media and mobile technology are great tools that give us a competitive advantage. However, we cannot ever take our online privacy
for granted. Three tips to keep you ahead of identity theft are:
- Use a password protection program that makes it easy to use highly-encrypted passwords
- Change passwords on sensitive accounts monthly
- Maintain strict privacy and security settings in your browser preferences
John Sileo is an online reputation expert and in-demand speaker on data security, social media safety and identity theft. His clients have included the Department of Defense, Pfizer, Visa, and Homeland Security. See his recent media appearances on 60 Minutes, Anderson Cooper and Fox Business.