Economy

Congress tackles data breaches

Congress tackles data breaches

Former Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer admitted on Capitol Hill Wednesday that the Silicon Valley giant still doesn't understand how hackers managed to compromise the information of billions of Yahoo users.

All 3 billion of Yahoo's users as of 2013 were affected by the hack, which the company only became aware of in December 2016. It also featured current and former CEOs of Equifax, which suffered a 2017 breach that reportedly affected approximately 145 million individuals and exposed sensitive personal and financial information. In October, it said that as it was integrating Yahoo into its systems, it obtained new intelligence that all Yahoo user accounts were affected by the August 2013 theft.

"A combination cooperation between public private to address this issue is needed", said former Equifax CEO Richard Smith.

"The threat from state-sponsored attacks has changed the playing field so dramatically that today I believe that all companies, even the most-well-defended ones, could fall victim to these crimes", she said.

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Executives from Yahoo and Equifax testified to Congress on Wednesday, apologizing for massive breaches affecting billions of people around the world.

Verizon, the largest USA wireless operator, acquired most of Yahoo Inc's assets in June, the same month Mayer stepped down.

One of those suspected hackers, Karim Baratov, has even been arrested and extradited to the US.

Mayer said Yahoo has not been able to identify how the 2013 intrusion occurred and that the company did not learn of the incident until the USA government presented data to Yahoo in November 2016.

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Barros told the committee he has focused on improving customer service and revising the company's structure so that the company's chief security officer reports directly to him. The company's new CEO said he's unsure if its data has been encrypted since the breach. The government is weighing whether to impose tougher standards on companies, such as requirements for notifying consumers after a breach. "Not fines, or other penalties - or real deterrents", said Connecticut Sen.

"To this day, we have still not been able to identify the intrusion that led to the attack".

"Social security number a static identity as a basis for our online identity will not be secure is not secure and will never be secure in the future", said Entrust Datacard Corp.

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