The Pwnedlist

by Robert D
Security and databases. If you scroll through the posts, you’ll see these are pretty common topics. This time, we’re talking about a database OF security.

More specifically, YOUR security. Pwnedlist.com is a new database containing millions of e-mails that have been hacked. No, it’s not another text dump for hackers. The database was created by two internet security experts, who wanted to automate the process of collecting information on people who have had their e-mail accounts hacked. It ended up being so successful, that the database now numbers among 5 million accounts. If you’re concerned about the staggering gaff that they just documented 5 million+ accounts that have already been compromised, don’t worry; the database uses a one-way hash to filter out any sensitive information. Think of it as, it reads to see that such-and-such account has been hacked, writes it down, and throws away the evidence.

Reflection

So did you end up on the list? If so, you’re going to AT LEAST want to change your passwords. It’s not uncommon for people to get hacked, even if you have nothing important in your e-mail account. On the other hand, if you’re not in the database, you’re good! Well, for now.

Text dumps of hacked accounts are nothing new by any account, but I’ve never heard of such a motivated attempt to collect information on them. I think the developers are running a pretty cool program, and hopefully, seeing the staggering statistics will sober up some of our less-safe friends.

Mello, J.P. “Free Service Lets You See If Your Email Address Has Been Compromised.” PCWorld. 4 Nov., 2011. http://www.pcworld.com/article/243192/free_service_lets_you_see_if_your_email_address_has_been_compromised.html

1 thought on “The Pwnedlist”

  1. At first, I thought that all they did was collect e-mails from text dumps and post them on their site. I like the idea of them using a one-way hash which removes sensitive information. I think a good idea would be if they could somehow send out an e-mail to the people who have had their accounts hacked. I assume that many people have no idea they have been hacked and their computers are probably part of a botnet.

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