Anyone who’s ever registered at AdultFriendFinder, Penthouse.com, and a variety of other web sites in this company’s network (yes, that is apparently around 400M accounts) should make sure they didn’t use passwords there they also use elsewhere.
One lesson: even after AdultFriendFinder data breach, companies can’t protect your data
Perhaps more importantly, this comes after AdultFriendFinder was already hacked last year and a competitor, Ashley Madison, was nearly bankrupted by a similar hack and exposure of all their users who were ostensibly looking to cheat on their spouses. This goes to show that companies cannot protect data online.
We’ll say it again: companies cannot protect your data online.
The solution to this is to not give them your personal data in the first place. Blur lets anyone accomplish this easily. Install Blur on your mobile phone or add it to your Chrome, Firefox, IE/Edge or Opera browser and when you are registering at a new web site or are being asked for your info, Blur lets you create “fake working info” or aliases we call Masked Personal Information.
How can you not give out your real info but still sign-up online?
Masked Emails, Masked Phone numbers, and Masked Credit Cards are all available for Blur users to instantly create when needed and give out to other web sites – when registering a new account or when shopping. This Masked information works – companies can email you, call you, and charge you – but they can never see or get your real personal info. Anytime you want – you can turn off a Masked Email or Credit Card – so that it simply stops working. You’d want to do this when a company has a data breach. Or, if you were being over-charged after shopping somewhere online, for example. Check out this short 1-minute explanation on YouTube.
We blogged about this over a year ago – identity theft in cases where your email is exposed as part of embarrassing data breaches or other private matters is serious because it is not just a financial loss that can be “made whole”. If your real personal email is part of these data breaches – and there were thousands of users who used .GOV and .MIL email addresses in this breach – that is going to be made public and you can’t “make it go away”. Though you can use Abine’s DeleteMe service to remove your email and contact information from dozens of databases.
The above post was written by Abine, Inc. co-founder and CEO, Rob Shavell. Follow Rob on Twitter @robshavell.