Written by Emily Butcher
Popular online retailer, Zappos.com, announced late Sunday night that hackers had exposed personal information for as many as its entire database of users – 24 million customers.
An informational post on the shoe and clothing company’s Web site specified that although whole credit card numbers were not accessed, account holders’ names, billing and shipping addresses, phone numbers, e-mail addresses and the last four digits of credit cards kept on file were hacked.
Customers are expected to receive an e-mail alert Monday in which Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh explains, "We were recently the victim of a cyber attack by a criminal who gained access to parts of our internal network and systems through one of our servers in Kentucky. We are cooperating with law enforcement to undergo an exhaustive investigation.”
Account passwords have been automatically invalidated and need to be reset, and Hsieh urges Zappos customers to change their passwords on any other sites that utilize the same, or a similar, password. This unsafe, yet common, practice greatly increases the chance for further compromised information and can even lead to identity theft, a crime made easier by the rise in online shopping.
Zappos customers can visit http://www.zappos.com/passwordchange to reset their password and are encouraged to contact the retailer with any questions or concerns.
Still, customers may be left with the lingering question: is the convenience of online shopping worth the risk of personal information being illegally accessed and exposed? This situation can act as a reminder for shoppers to take precautions when storing important information online and checking that the sites they purchase from are safe and secure.