Thursday, February 18, 2010

Microsoft's Privacy Breach

You might want to check your e-mail.

Ars Technica is reporting that Microsoft is investigating a bug that caused mobile users to see other peoples inboxes.   Apparently, when mobile phone users went to log into there account, Hotmail (or Windows Live Mail as its called now) would instead show someone else's account to the mobile user.

According to Wikipedia, Windows Live Mail, which is a online based e-mail service, hosts over 270 million users (as of 2008), making it one of the most popular services of its kind on the Internet.  Which also makes this breach of privacy very troubling.  I and many other users on the planet could have had our e-mail exposed for anyone to see. Although I usually don't do anything to important through my e-mail, I do have some confirmation e-mails for other services that I have signed up for in the past.  I thought that it would be a relatively safe way to have my information stored in a second location.  But I guess I was wrong.

Other people may have more personal information store in their accounts. Everthing from pictures of their families to banking information to provocative pictures of their girlfriends could have been in some of these exposed accounts. I guess it goes to show you that you really need to be the person in charge of your security and privacy online.  We depend greatly on services to protect our privacy, but they aren't perfect and they do make mistakes.

I just hope that the problem wasn't to wide spread.  And, to anyone that read my e-mail, please be nice to my accounts.

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