Menu
Avast takes community forum offline after data breach

Avast takes community forum offline after data breach

The company says it will move the forum to a more secure software platform

Prague-based antivirus company, Avast, said, on Monday, it took its community forum offline after a data breach, but payment information was not compromised.

Usernames and nicknames, email addresses and encrypted passwords were obtained in an attack over the weekend, wrote Avast CEO Vince Steckler on a company blog. The attack affected less than 400,000 of Avast's 200 million users.

"We realize that it is serious to have these usernames stolen and regret the concern and inconvenience it causes you," Steckler wrote.

How the forum was breached remains unknown, Steckler wrote. The leaked passwords were hashed, which means that hackers obtained cryptographic representations of passwords that have been run through an algorithm. For example, the password "Rover" run through the SHA-1 algorithm is "ac54ed2d6c6c938bb66c63c5d0282e9332eed72c."

Steckler didn't specify the algorithm Avast uses to hash passwords, but warned that "it could be possible for a sophisticated thief to derive many of the passwords."

Converting those hashes into their original passwords is possible using decoding tools and powerful graphics processors. But the longer and more complicated the password -- such as one with a mix of capital letters, numbers and symbols -- the harder it is to crack.

People who reuse the same password from Avast's forum on other sites are advised to change them immediately, he wrote. When the forum is back online, users will be prompted to change their passwords.

Steckler wrote the forum was hosted on an isolated, third-party platform for many years. Avast plans to rebuild the forum using a new software platform, which will be faster and more secure.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags intrusionsecuritydata breachAvast

Slideshows

Top 50 defining moments of the New Zealand channel in 2016

Top 50 defining moments of the New Zealand channel in 2016

Reseller News looks back on a tumultuous 12 months for the New Zealand channel, assessing the fallout from a year of sizeable industry change. Whether it be local or global mergers and acquisitions, distribution deals or job changes, the channel that started the year differs somewhat to the one set to finish it - Reseller News assesses the key moments that made 2016.​

Top 50 defining moments of the New Zealand channel in 2016
​Hewlett Packard Enterprise honours high achieving NZ channel

​Hewlett Packard Enterprise honours high achieving NZ channel

Hewlett Packard Enterprise honoured its top performing Kiwi partners at the second running of its HPE Partner Awards in New Zealand, held at a glitzy ceremony in Auckland. Recognising excellence across eight categories - from distributors to resellers - the tech giant celebrated its first year as a standalone company, following its official split from HP in 2015.

​Hewlett Packard Enterprise honours high achieving NZ channel
Nutanix treats channel partners to Christmas cruise

Nutanix treats channel partners to Christmas cruise

Nutanix recently took to the seas for a Christmas Cruise around Sydney Harbour with its Australia and New Zealand staff, customers and partners to celebrate a stellar year for the vendor. With the sun out, they were all smiles and mingled over drinks and food.

Nutanix treats channel partners to Christmas cruise
Show Comments