Optus customers have been advised to change passwords for online services, including banking, and set up stronger authentication measures to protect against a massive cyber security attack.
The phone and internet provider has scrambled to secure millions of customers’ information amid fears that names, dates of birth, phone numbers, email addresses, driver’s license numbers, passport numbers or addresses have been obtained by hackers.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: Tech Experts Urge Optus Customers to Take Urgent Action.
Watch Sunrise on Channel 7 and stream it for free on 7plus >>
Optus says it is working with Australia’s Cyber Security Center to limit any risk to current and former customers.
The company said Thursday it was unaware that customers “have suffered any harm,” but urged them to have “a heightened awareness” of “strange or suspicious” activity on their accounts.
However, customers have been urged to take further steps.
What do you have to do
“First, I recommend people change their logins for their bank,” technology expert Geoff Quattromani told Sunrise on Friday.
“Make sure the username and password are different
“Change your email password if you can and make sure you have two-factor authentication. To be clear, you (a scammer) may know my username and password, but if you don’t know my phone number, which will receive an SMS with a unique code, you won’t be able to log in.
Quattromani also warned that Optus customers could be targeted by scammers via email, prompting them to communicate with the telco through its app.
Scamwatch, an initiative of the federal consumer protection agency, the ACCC, has offered similar advice, urging customers to check their bank accounts for “items you didn’t purchase.”
It has also recommended “limiting” bank account spending.
“It’s important to be aware that you may be at risk of identity theft and to take urgent action to prevent harm,” Scamwatch said.
“Scammers can use your personal information to contact you by phone, text message or email.
“Never click on links and never give out personal or financial information to anyone who contacts you out of the blue.”
Optus has notified the Australian Federal Police, the Office of the Australian Information Regulator and other key regulators.
Quattromani has described the attack as “probably the biggest hack we’ve seen in Australia and for that reason probably the most concerning”.
“I think the number of people that will be affected will be dramatic,” he said.
“That’s why government agencies stepped in, that’s why the big four banks were alerted.
“People need to know about this and Optus needs to do a really good job of keeping their customers informed because right now we only have a media release and we need more than that.”
https://7news.com.au/sunrise/optus-customers-urged-to-swiftly-change-passwords-set-up-two-step-authentication-c-8330014 Optus Data Breach: How to Protect Your Identity and Money Now After Major Cyber Attack Hack