This Wednesday, November 28th, the US-based computer giant, Dell, revealed that it has recently experienced a cyber attack directed at its database. According to information that the company shared, the attack took place earlier this month, with Dell noticing it on November 9th. The attack was immediately blocked, and the initial investigation was already performed.
So far, investigators believe that hackers were after the data belonging to Dell’s customers. Things like names, email addresses, as well as passwords, were in danger of being stolen, although the passwords are “hashed”, which makes it difficult to decipher them. Even so, Dell admitted that there is a possibility that some information was successfully stolen.
While the initial investigation has found no evidence that any of the targeted data is extracted, the possibility that hackers managed to steal something still exists. One thing that Dell was able to claim for certain is that credit card data or any other highly sensitive customer information was neither stolen, nor targeted.
However, as long as there is uncertainty regarding whether or not passwords and other data were stolen , customers should reset their passwords on Dell, just to be sure. The company advised this as well and has also encouraged its customers to change all other passwords in case they are the same as the one used at Dell.com.
The attack was unexpected, but Dell still managed to react in time, according to the initial investigation. In order to understand what the attackers were after, as well as all potential consequences, the company has already hired a digital forensics company. This firm will conduct its own, independent investigation in an attempt to track down those responsible for the attack. Any discovery will, of course, be reported to law enforcement.
Dell also stated that this is an age of highly sophisticated information security threats. The company has recognized this fact and is doing everything in its power to ensure that its customers, as well as their private and sensitive information, are kept safe. In fact, Dell will also continue with its investment in security in order to detect and prevent such attacks in the future.
Unfortunately, the company was unable to disclose how many of its customers were affected by the attack if any. This uncertainty is the reason why it advised anyone with an account on Dell.com to change their password as soon as possible. The company also suggested some measures that would ensure that all users have safe and strong passwords that would not be easily guessed by hackers or software.
These suggestions include the creation of passwords with a minimum of eight characters, preferably with a mix of lowercase and uppercase letters, as well as adding numbers and symbols. While this is obvious to more security-aware users, there are still many others that are not cautious enough to properly secure their accounts. These suggestions can help strengthen users’ Dell password and should be applied on any other website as well.