7 January 2014

Millions of usernames and phone numbers from the popular Snapchat program were recently publicly released after attackers copied the data directly from Snapchat's servers.

If you use Snapchat, you should change your password for Snapchat and any other website using the same password.

The credentials were leaked after attackers found a vulnerability in Snapchat's service.

They were originally posted anonymously on a website called SnapchatDB, which has since been taken down. However, copies of the database were made and circulated quickly across the internet, resulting in a large number of people having a copy of this database.

It appears that accounts for approximately one third of users from the United States were involved, but it is unknown if the vulnerability has allowed access to other users’ credentials, including Australian users. For this reason, we recommend that you change your password for Snapchat and any apps or websites using the same password.

Checking if your credentials were leaked

The original website that disclosed the data leak is no longer active, but copies of the data were made. Several websites have been setup to allow people to see if their data was part of the publicly released information, including haveibeenpwned and GSLookup. In these websites, you enter your Snapchat username, and the website searches the data to see if your details are in there.

Our previous alert on breached websites discusses the privacy implications for using such checker websites. As a rule, you should not enter your password or other private data into such websites. Malicious websites have been created that mimic these services.

More information

Stay Smart Online has more information on protecting yourself online.

See also our recent information discussing the risks of using websites to check if your details have been lost in data breaches.

The information provided here is of a general nature. Everyone's circumstances are different. If you require specific advice you should contact your local technical support provider.

Feedback

Thank you to those subscribers who have provided feedback to our Alerts and Newsletters. We are very interested in your feedback and where possible take on board your suggestions or requests.

Disclaimer

This information has been prepared by Enex TestLab for the Department of Communications ('the Department'). It was accurate and up to date at the time of publishing.

This information is general information only and is intended for use by private individuals and small to medium sized businesses. If you are concerned about a specific cyber security issue you should seek professional advice.

The Commonwealth, Enex TestLab, and all other persons associated with this advisory accept no liability for any damage, loss or expense incurred as a result of the provision of this information, whether by way of negligence or otherwise.

Nothing in this information (including the listing of a person or organisation or links to other web sites) should be taken as an endorsement of a particular product or service.

Please note that third party views or recommendations included in this information do not reflect the views of the Commonwealth, or indicate its commitment to a particular course of action. The Commonwealth also cannot verify the accuracy of any third party material included in this information.

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