In what seems to be a case of a major phishing attack, passwords of over 10,000 Hotmail (now Windows Live Hotmail) accounts have been compromised and the details have also been posted online.
According to reports, data related to the stolen accounts initially appeared on a site called Pastebin.com which is typically used by developers to share computer code.
Many analysts believe that there is a possibility that the details of the accounts posted may actually be a very small part of the actual breach which may potentially affect a much larger group of Hotmail users.
Microsoft has incidentally acknowledged the breach and its spokesperson has declared that "As part of that investigation, we determined that this was not a breach of internal Microsoft data and initiated our standard process of working to help customers regain control of their accounts."
In addition Microsoft has decided to temporarily block the affected accounts and it has advised all its users that in case they suspect that they may have been a victim of phishing attack, they should immediately change their passwords.
Of late phishing attacks have become increasingly common and the new incident comes across as a wake up call for internet users to remain more vigilant when they surf the internet.
This breach has just only been discovered and new details are being released as we speak. There are indeed many, many more passwords being leaked online. The problem is that the Hotmail password gives control over the owner other services as well including its photos, files and possibly even access to other third party services as part of Passport.
(The Register )