Hackers have attacked the jobs section of the Washington Post’s website and managed to find 1.2 million email addresses.
According to a FAQ, a Post spokesperson said that the worst users would have to face is a series of spam emails, which should be ignored.
The face said that readers may receive some unsolicited spam as a result of this incident. It went on to trot out the usual “well, you should avoid opening suspicious or unsolicited e-mail” anyway sort of statement.
But the Post has not said how its security was clearly turned over by the hackers. It is one of the downsides of an operation that clearly harvests the personal details of its readers. The Post demanded that online readers fork over a small amount of personal information before registering on the site.
Most people assume that the data will be kept safe, in this case it clearly was not.
The fact that the attack has not been announced by any of the usual suspects means that it was not carried out by Anonymous. The whole point of these operations is to make their attacks public.
This means that the site was probably bought down by someone who was looking for data which could be used in spam or fraud.
Readers of the Post might be wondering how secure the rest the site is.