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Quora Says Data Breach Hits 100 Mln Users

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Information sharing website Quora said Monday that a data breach may have compromised the personal data of about 100 million of its users.

Quora Chief Executive Adam D'Angelo said in a blog post that the company recently discovered that some user data was compromised as a result of unauthorized access to one of its systems by a "malicious third party."

Quora's disclosure of a data breach comes close on the heels of hotel chain Marriott International Inc.'s (MAR) announcement last Friday of a much larger data breach involving its Starwood guest reservation database that contained information of up to about 500 million guests.

Quora, co-founded by former Facebook employees Adam D'Angelo and Charlie Cheever, noted that the data breach may have compromised account information, public content and actions such as questions, answers, comments and upvotes; and non-public content and actions, for approximately 100 million Quora users.

The personal account information that might have been compromised includes user names, email addresses, encrypted passwords, and data imported from linked networks when authorized by users.

Quora noted that in addition to the work being conducted by internal security teams, it has retained a digital forensics and security firm to assist in the investigation.

The company has also notified law enforcement officials and is in the process of notifying users whose data was compromised.

"The overwhelming majority of the content accessed was already public on Quora, but the compromise of account and other private information is serious," D'Angelo said.

Quora added it is logging out all affected users and invalidating their passwords if they use a password as their authentication method. The company advised people not to reuse the same password across multiple services and urged people who are doing so to change their passwords.

"We believe we've identified the root cause and taken steps to address the issue, although our investigation is ongoing and we'll continue to make security improvements," D'Angelo said.

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