Freecycle Confirms Massive Data Breach

Freecycle, an online forum dedicated to exchanging used items rather than trashing them, has recently confirmed a significant data breach that has impacted over 7 million users.

The nonprofit organization became aware of the breach on Wednesday, several weeks after a threat actor attempted to sell the stolen data on a hacking forum on May 30. In response, Freecycle urged affected individuals to change their passwords immediately.

According to Freecycle, the stolen information includes usernames, User IDs, email addresses, and MD5-hashed passwords, with no additional data exposed.

A threat actor who obtained the stolen information shared screenshots, revealing that the credentials of Freecycle founder and executive director, Deron Beal, were compromised. This allowed the threat actor to gain full access to member information and forum posts.

Beal acknowledged the breach and advised all members to change their passwords promptly, emphasizing that the organization is actively addressing the issue. He expressed regret for any inconvenience caused and assured users that further updates would be provided.

Freecycle data up for sale (Source: BleepingComputer)

Freecycle also advised individuals who use the same credentials for other online services to change them in order to prevent potential account breaches.

To reset your Freecycle password, you have two options:

  • Method 1: Follow the password reset process via email. Please note that there may be delays of up to one hour due to high email traffic.
  • Method 2: Utilize an alternate password reset option.

Upon discovering the data breach, Freecycle promptly reported the incident to the appropriate authorities.

Users were cautioned to be vigilant regarding phishing emails and to avoid clicking on suspicious links or downloading unexpected attachments. While Freecycle aims to filter out spam effectively, users may experience an increase in spam emails.

With a user base of nearly 11 million members spanning over 5,300 local towns worldwide, Freecycle remains committed to promoting sustainable practices and reducing waste through its online exchange platform.

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