Customer information exposed in Amazon data breach

New York – November: Amazon suffered a serious data breach that exposed customer names and email addresses on its website. The breach occurred as the retail giant was gearing up for the holiday shopping frenzy. The retailer emailed the affected customers but was unwilling to give any further details on the numbers involved.

An Amazon spokesperson said that they had fixed the problem and had informed customers who were affected. The email sent out to customers said:

“Our website inadvertently disclosed your email address or name and email address due to a technical error. The issue has been fixed. This is not a result of anything you have done. …and there is no need for you to change your password or take any other action. The impacted customers have been contacted.”

Amazon stated that the issue did not involve a breach of its website or its systems but was in fact a “technical issue” which had revealed customers names and email addresses on its website.

Senior analyst at Gartner, Avivah Litan, said:

“…bad actors can use email addresses for what's known as phishing - contacting people by email and trying to trick them into providing additional sensitive information, like their passwords or Social Security numbers.”