Gawker Hacked, Passwords and Source Code Stolen

By Alexis C. Madrigal

Gawker's been hit by the worst cyberattack I can remember being visited upon a media site. A group of hackers broke in, stole all its commenters' passwords and posted them all to BitTorrent.

Why? It's not totally clear. The hackers (who go by the name Gnosis) haven't given a very good explanation for their actions. But it may be payback for Adrian Chen's story back in July in which he called attention to the plight of an 11-year-old girl who was being harassed by a group of people from the online community 4chan.

Our user databases appear to have been compromised. The passwords were encrypted. But simple ones may be vulnerable to a brute-force attack. You should change your Gawker password and on any other sites on which you've used the same passwords. We're deeply embarrassed by this breach.

We should not be in the position of relying on the goodwill of the hackers who identified the weakness in our systems. And, yes, the irony is not lost on us.

Read the full story at Gawker.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2010/12/gawker-hacked-passwords-and-source-code-stolen/67896/