Popular British parenting site Mumsnet has been targeted by a series of attacks, including a DDoS attack and even a “swatting” attack, which led armed officers to the home of founder, Justine Roberts, in the middle of the night.
The Twitter account @DadSecurity (which has since been suspended) claimed responsibility for the attacks, and published a database containing more than 3,000 user passwords. The list appears to disclose user names, IP addresses and passwords of users, as well as information from site administrators.
The incidents began on the night of Tuesday, August 11, when the site was taken down for several hours by a DDoS attack, as the servers were flooded with requests. During the same night, Justine Roberts was victim of a “swatting” attack where armed police were called to her London home.
Posting on Mumsnet, the founder explained what had happened,
“An armed response team turned up at my house last week in the middle of the night, after reports of a gunman prowling around. A Mumsnet user who engaged with @DadSecurity on Twitter was warned to “prepare to be swatted by the best” in a tweet that included a picture of a swat team, after which police arrived at her house late at night following a report of gunshots. Needless to say, she and her young family were pretty shaken up. It’s worth saying that we don’t believe these addresses were gained directly from any Mumsnet hack, as we don’t collect addresses. The police are investigating both instances.”
Not only was Mumsnet subject to both of those attacks but it was also found that at least 11 users’ accounts had been compromised via a sophisticated phishing attack. However, yesterday, the hole was found that had been used to capture the user login data and patched.
Nearly eight million users have been forced to change their passwords, while Mumsnet currently undergoes full security testing by external experts to determine additional weaknesses that could be exploited.
The company also offered some solid advice: stay vigilant, update your password on the website, as well as on all other sites where it’s possible users may have reused the same password.
What you need to know about changing your password following the attacks on our site: http://t.co/Sr3f7ZUBmR pic.twitter.com/2tBwDIRW6L
— Mumsnet (@MumsnetTowers) August 19, 2015
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