The website of one of the leading news service providers in USA - Washington Post, fell prey to hackers and as a result account details of more than 1.27 million subscribers on the website were exposed. This attack took place over a period of two days - June 27 and June 28.
Here is a quote from the official release about the incident issued by Washington Post:
We discovered that an unauthorized third party attacked our Jobs website and was able to obtain access to certain user IDs and e-mail addresses. No passwords or other personal information was affected.
We are taking this incident very seriously. We quickly identified the vulnerability and shut it down, and are pursuing the matter with law enforcement. We sincerely apologize for this inconvenience.
Washington Post gives a rough estimate of the number of stolen user IDs and e-mail addresses to be around 1.27 Million and it was only the Jobs website of Washington Post which was attacked. Well this is indeed a big reason to worry because Job sites generally contain e-mail addresses of big shots of various companies and their e-mails are now exposed.
The only relief is that, since no passwords were stolen, users need not worry changing passwords of their accounts on other websites since it has been found over and again that people generally tend to use the same password for creating accounts on various websites.
However, Washington Post has said that those e-mails which have been stolen might get exposed to un-wanted spam e-mails and apart from this, there is nothing much which users should worry about. Here is what Washington Post has to say about the steps taken to address this attack:
We quickly identified the attack and took action to shut it down. We also have implemented additional measures to prevent against a similar attack in the future, and we are pursuing the matter with law enforcement. In addition, we are conducting a thorough audit of the security of the Jobs site.