Sophos takes down partner portal after signs of hacking
Sophos believes that hackers might have stolen sensitive user information from its partner portal
IDG News Service - Security firm Sophos has taken its partner portal offline and will reset every user's password after it found signs of a potential security breach on the server hosting it.
"Two unauthorized programs were found on the server, and our preliminary investigations indicate that these were designed to allow unauthorized remote access to information," Sophos said in a security alert posted on its website.
The company's staff found the unauthorized applications during a routine security check on April 3, and the potentially compromised server was immediately taken offline for further investigation, the company said.
Sophos could not establish if the data stored in the website's database, which includes partners' names and business addresses, email addresses, contact details, and hashed passwords, had been stolen. However, it decided to proceed under the assumption that it had.
The website will be restored after the security audit is completed and the problem is remediated. However, all user passwords will be forcibly reset as an additional precaution.
The company advised its partners to also change their passwords on other websites where they might have used them, and to be on alert for potential phishing emails that claim to originate from Sophos.
It's relatively common for attackers responsible for breaches that result in stolen email addresses to exploit the known business relationship between the affected users and the victim organization through phishing, in an attempt to extract more information.
In situations where the affected organizations are security firms like Sophos, such phishing attacks can have a high rate of success, because of the inherent trust that exists between users and their security vendors.
"We realize that the site's downtime and the forced password resets may be an overreaction and are sorry for the disruption this will cause, but we would rather cause some inconvenience at this stage than delay as we wait for further information," the company said.
Only the older partner portal, located at https://gpp.partners.sophos.com, has been affected by this security incident, Sophos said. Partners that have already moved to its new Salesforce.com-based portal don't have to worry about the password resets or downtime.
- 15 Non-Certified IT Skills Growing in Demand
- How 19 Tech Titans Target Healthcare
- Twitter Suffering From Growing Pains (and Facebook Comparisons)
- Agile Comes to Data Integration
- Slideshow: 7 security mistakes people make with their mobile device
- iOS vs. Android: Which is more secure?
- 11 sure signs you've been hacked
- Who's Spying on You? You're aware of the threats of malware to your business but what about the ever-changing ground rules? Cybercriminals today are launching attacks against...
- Pay-as-you-Grow Data Protection: IBM Tivoli's Full-featured Data Protection Suite for Small to Medium Businesses IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Suite for Unified Recovery gives small and medium businesses the opportunity to start out with only the individual solutions...
- Streamline Data Protection with IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Operations Center IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) has been an industry-standard data protection solution for two decades. But, where most competitors focus exclusively on Backup...
- Simplify and Consolidate Data Protection for Better Business Results Learn about IBM® Tivoli® Storage Manager Operations Center, which provides advanced visualization, built-in analytics and integrated workflow automation features that leapfrog traditional backup...
- Meg Whitman presents Unlocking IT with Big Data During this Web Event you will hear Meg Whitman, President and CEO, HP discuss HAVEn - the #1 Big Data platform, as well...
- The New Way to Work Knowledge Vault This Knowledge Vault focuses on how, in today's increasingly virtual world, it's more important than ever to engage deeply with employees, suppliers, partners,... All Cybercrime and Hacking White Papers | Webcasts