The personal details of thousands of Dell Australia customers have been accessed by hackers. Australian security firms are concerned that Australian customers of other companies could also be affected as a result of a follow-on effect. This is a warning of a major security breach at a global email service provider and it affects everyone, whether or not you are a client of Dell.
Dell Australia customers received an email message from the company informing that Epsilon, the company Dell relied on to manage its email communications, had been hacked into and hundreds of thousands of customers’ details were now in public domain. Having your email in the wrong hands exposes you to scam and computer infections, having additional information also breached may lead to identity theft, credit card fraud and other unfortunate consequences.
In Australia, the Privacy Commissioner announced that he was opening an “own motion investigation” into this incident. I am not entirely sure what that means and how the Government is planning to run it, but I will definitely keep you updated on any further developments. The Commissioner expressed disappointment that only Dell Australia had contacted his office to own up about the breach and the affect it may have on Australian individuals and businesses.
computer repairs gurus say that many other overseas companies that have a contract with Eplison and have a lot of Australian customers are likely to have been affected but we may never know which ones. The law, as it currently stands, prohibits forcing companies to disclose this kind of information.
I read online that Epsilon has about 2500 clients whose email databases they managed. So, it is anyone’s guess how many people are affected in total, simply because they are – unknowingly – customers of those Epsilon’s customers.
Smart Company is reporting that the team leader of investigations at the Australian High Tech Crime Centre, Nigel Phair, said that Australia “desperately needed” data breach legislation that would compel companies to report privacy breaches of this nature.
To make a bad story even worse, it has come out that Epsilon collects social networking behaviour data, political persuasion information, etc., on companies and individuals: all, of course, done on behalf of heir clients. This kind of depth of information would allow to construct very organic and believable scams and some of them will not be as inane as the Facebook Photoshop scam I reported on earlier.
Computer repair experts at Mobile Geeks are monitoring our client’s business computer systems for any sign of infection; however, our private clients do not have this level of protection. This means you must be doubly vigilant. Stay up to date with computer virus news (All the major developments are published on this website). Check that your anti-virus software is updated and do not allow any third party access to your computer without being absolutely sure they do not mean any harm.