BTYahoo email accounts being hacked

This topic was created by BTCustomer .

  1. BTCustomer

    BTYahoo email accounts being hacked

    The latest installment of the email problems related to Yahoo!

    seems to be hitting BTYahoo! customers, who are reporting that their webmail accounts have been compromised, and spam sent to people in their online address books or whose addresses are in stored emails on the webmail interface.

    Some customers have found it impossible to change their online security information via the web interface and are getting the usual helpdesk runaround.

    So far BT are behaving in the way they know best - pretending that there really isn't a problem and if it is, it is the customers' fault.

    1 - they are ignoring the issue on their public facing status web pages and Usenet announce groups.

    2 - individual customers are so far, not being told of any wider problem, and given anti-phishing advice.

    3 - The BT Community forum moderators, after a few days and over a hundred postings, are making non-committal statements that investigations are going on - but remain tight-lipped about whether there has been any centra security breach.

    4 - the "banning" habit is still in fashion on the BT Community forum - those with a reputation for commenting on privacy matters are kept off the forum - not because of the content of their posts but because of who they are. They seem to have learned nothing from their BT Beta forum/Phorm-Webwise PR disaster.

    There seems little interest in the press in the security melt down of a major global and UK email provider.

    BTYahoo! customers should seriously consider cleaninig out the contents of their webmail contact lists and ALL email folders so that if the accounts ARE accessed, there is nothing in them to harvest. They should also make sure the Trash folder is emptied every time they visit the webmail interface. With an email system as unreliable as that currently being provided by BT through Yahoo!, customers should simply not rely on it or use it for anything mission critical.

    It would be a refreshing change if BT and Yahoo! could be a lot more open with customers, and provide some USEFL answers as well as a decent level of customer service to hacked customers. But old habits die hard, and the BT that signed a covert deal for secret interception trials with Phorm back in 2006 seems to find it hard to understand transparency and openness.

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Re: BTYahoo email accounts being hacked

      Thanks for the comment - we've followed it up with some coverage.


    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: BTYahoo email accounts being hacked

      Getting loads of spam Emails all from clients with a BT-Yahoo Email address, looks like an inside security problem but hard to tell.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This is still going on, in my case with yahoo uk, not BT yahoo accounts. I only collected them today, but the mails were sent at the begining of June. The interesting thing is the two accounts I've got spam from were my own very, very old yahoo accounts that literally haven't been touched since the day they were opened. A couple of friends and family members have had the well advertised problem previously, but all cases were email accounts in use, and the problems could have been down to a compromised system. In my current case the accounts were originally created to purchase some dirt cheap short-use domains from yahoo, then ignored - the only reason I imagine they are even still in existence is the yahoo business connection.

    - both accounts had only one email addy each in the address book (both on different domains), which was also the 'secondary' email for the account; these were the addresses the spam arrived at

    - the email addresses used as secondary on the yahoo accounts are throwaway aliases which have never been used for anything else, so prior to the spam/phishing email they'd never sent anything outgoing, and had only ever recieved one email each, seven years ago.

    - neither account has been used by me in 7 years, and were only ever used to receive mail on one occasion.

    - neither has ever been set up on an email client; access was only ever by webmail, and then on an old machine now unused and under the bed for at least 5 years

    - both had random 16 character passwords using all character types and only ever written on a piece of paper (which I miraculously, unbelievably found today!)

    - the header all appear to be legit yahoo headers sent via webmail, originating in Bermuda - much the same formats as the ones I got a few months ago from friends/colleagues accounts.

    - neither account was altered in the sense that passwords or secondary emails were changed (old PW still got me access) or 'security questions', although the sent emails were not in the outbox - presumably deleted.

    My point with all this is that short of a brute-force attack (surely unlikely to succeed on a webmail portal against a reasonable password) this suggests yahoo have some very serious vulnerability that does NOT rely on XSS, keylogger or some other means of harvesting PW, secure cookies or whatever from client PC or phone browser or a mobile app - PW is ONLY on paper and a Mac unused for 5 years.

    The scale on which this was done previously made me think the statements from BT yahoo as to 'how' were bullshit; I'm absolutely sure of it now. I have a couple of 'junk only' yahoo accounts I do still use for forum signups etc, but I think its time to dump those too.

  3. scratchpad

    BTYahoo email accounts being hacked

    A new wave of this appears to be happening now (February 2014) that may be linked to the current Yahoo security breach. Despite BT saying that they would update customers on last years problems BT have not done so. They have also done nothing to stop the myth that their move to Critical Path as their email service provider from Yahoo was as a result of the frequent Yahoo security breaches.

    The move to Critical Path was supposed to be completed by the end of last year but the migration of existing users has not started.

    Critical Path have been swallowed up by another American company in December that is likely to lead to further delay. This looks like a useful area for The Register to investigate.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: BTYahoo email accounts being hacked

      Thanks Scratchpad - forwarded to newsdesk for perusal. But I think it may be related to Yahoo's warning a few days ago - which we covered here.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022