Tech experts say to expect that no personal information is safe online

EMBED </>More News Videos

Yahoo is admitting that hackers stole account information from more than 500 million users. This is one of the largest cyber-security breaches ever. (KGO-TV)

Yahoo is admitting that hackers stole account information from more than 500 million users. This is one of the largest cyber-security breaches ever.

Yahoo said Thursday that anyone using their site should assume that their information has been stolen. That means names, email addresses, birth dates, passwords and security questions.

"If this is a canary in the coal mine, then the coal mine is so full of canaries that none of us can get in. Every week there is a new breach, or break," said Internet forecaster Paul Saffo.



Saffo, a Silicon Valley forecaster, is so weary of Internet security that he changes passwords for every account, and never provides his real birthday. He said he was not surprised by Yahoo's admission of the breach. If you think your information has ever been safe, he implies that you're living in a fantasy world.

"People should not feel safe and for the most part, it is their own fault. They create bad passwords, give out too much information and they're just careless about what they put on line," Saffo said.

You might as well be handing hackers the tools they will use against you.

RELATED: Yahoo confirms huge data breach affecting 500 million accounts

"The implications are that if someone is able to get into your Yahoo mail account, if that is the account banks use, it provides a stepping stone for hackers to get into other accounts," said USC computer security expert Cliiford Newman.

Yahoo blames a "state sponsored actor" for the breach, that's a fancy way of saying hackers from another country, acting out in what Saffo calls a vicious cyber Cold War.

"The thing about this is it is an information war. You and I are the collateral damage," Saffo said.

To protect yourself, change your passwords, make them stronger, and change the answers to your security questions. Replace them with alternative passwords.


Click here for more stories on Yahoo.
Related Topics:
businessyahooemailsdata breachhackingcaliforniasilicon valleytechnologySunnyvale
(Copyright ©2016 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.)

Load Comments