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AOL hacked

By Nextrio on October 21st, 2015 Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditlinkedinmailby feather

aollogoAOL has been a household name since the Internet was in its early stages, and yet the company has not always made the best decisions. Consulting with IT companies in Tucson to protect users from the consequences of lack of security looked to not be on their radar. Read on for a quick look at the scandal involving AOL in 2006.

The Decision

You might hear of security breaches and mistakes and remark on the unfortunate situation, but the situation AOL was involved with in 2006 was not a security breach or an accident. Rather, AOL voluntarily decided to release a substantial amount of data regarding users’ Internet searches. Hundreds of thousands of AOL users had their search histories released, and these histories spanned over 3 months of Internet use.  

The Implications

The data that AOL released allows people to view every web query a specific user has made over the previous quarter of a year. While each specific user may not be identified by name, three months’ worth of queries can be used to both identify and incriminate the user. Since there is no limit to what you can type into a search box, a substantial amount of personal and private information was released. Many individuals may have used this information to essentially spy on their neighbors, employees, and friends.

The Result

Due to the multitude of consequences that can occur when someone acquires your personal information, AOL users reacted in an appropriately furious manner. AOL executives had made the conscious decision to betray their customers and release private information, much of which might have led to terminated employment, arrests, divorces, and other regretful situations. Some spoke their minds, while others boycotted the company.

Are you interested in making sure that your business never suffers the same fate as AOL? Contact Nextrio or visit our website. Our IT company offers managed services in Tucson. If you would like to learn more about our cloud services, user training, or IT projects, call us at (520) 519-6301 today.