Dell's network affected by attempted hack
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On November 9, Dell’s network was breached by unauthorized users, who attempted to extract personal information such as names, emails, and hashed passwords. The computer manufacturer issued a customer update to report the incident and allay fears that sensitive information such as credit card details may have been stolen. However, a more recent press release seems to have a much more cautious tone. The original customer update from Dell contained this remark:
Through that investigation, we found no conclusive evidence that any customer information was taken. Furthermore, there is no indication that any credit card or other sensitive customer information was targeted.
The new press release seeks to confirm most of the content of the customer update and details Dell’s proactive maneuvers in dealing with the unauthorized access, but it also offers an additional note of warning:
Though it is possible some of this information was removed from Dell’s network, our investigations found no conclusive evidence that any was extracted.
This may simply be a case of the company making a pre-emptive statement: In an email published by CNET, Dell has already suggested it is possible that no customer information was taken at all. If further down the road it is discovered that personal information was actually taken, the company can at least point to the careful wording of its recent press release.
Unsurprisingly, in the wake of numerous hacking scandals, Dell has dealt with the cyber attack vigorously. The company has brought in a digital forensics firm to carry out an investigation and has reported the hack attempt to the appropriate law enforcement agency. In addition to that, all Dell.com passwords were reset.
Dell.com users have been advised to change their passwords when prompted, and Dell has offered a number of tips to assist customers with creating new passwords. It remains to be seen how many people may have been affected by the “unauthorized activity.”