‘One billion’ affected by Yahoo hack

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Yahoo has said more than one billion user accounts may have been affected in a hacking attack dating back to 2013.

The internet giant said it appears separate from a breach disclosed in September, when Yahoo revealed some 500 million accounts were accessed in 2014.

Yahoo said names, phone numbers, passwords and email addresses were stolen, but not bank and payment data.

The company, which is being taken over by Verizon, said it is working closely with the police and authorities.

When Yahoo disclosed in September the 2014 data breach, the company said information had been “stolen by what we believe is a state-sponsored actor”. Yahoo did not say which country it held responsible.

That breach included swathes of personal information, including names and emails, as well as “unencrypted security questions and answers”.

The hack took place in 2014, and Yahoo has come under pressure to disclose why it took so long for the breach to be made public.

The new breach raises fresh questions about Verizon’s $4.8n proposed acquisition of Yahoo, and whether the US mobile carrier will try to modify or abandon its bid.

If the hacks cause a user backlash against Yahoo, the company’s services would not be as valuable to Verizon.

In a statement, Verizon said that it would evaluate the situation as Yahoo investigates and would review the “new development before reaching any final conclusions”.

Yahoo said on Wednesday that users should change their passwords and security questions.

‘One billion’ affected by Yahoo hack

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