23andMe
23andMe

23andMe hack likely impacts over half of customers

What To Know

  • In October, a breach targeted the DNA testing kit company 23andMe, and the extent of the exposure appears to be more significant than initially reported.
  • A stark contrast to the earlier belief that only 14,000 individuals were affected—merely a fraction of the company’s 14 million-strong customer base, as reported by the BBC.
  • The breach is purportedly linked to compromised customer usernames and passwords, revealing sensitive personal details such as information related to ancestry trees, birthdays, and general geographic locations.
  • While the findings of this inquiry, conducted with the assistance of third-party forensics experts, are yet to be disclosed, 23andMe anticipates incurring expenses ranging from $1 to $2 million related to the breach.

In October, a breach targeted the DNA testing kit company 23andMe, and the extent of the exposure appears to be more significant than initially reported. The latest estimate suggests that the personal information of approximately 6.9 million customers was compromised.

A stark contrast to the earlier belief that only 14,000 individuals were affected—merely a fraction of the company’s 14 million-strong customer base, as reported by the BBC.

The breach is purportedly linked to compromised customer usernames and passwords, revealing sensitive personal details such as information related to ancestry trees, birthdays, and general geographic locations.

The company acknowledged that, in certain instances, the hack might have laid bare pictures and displayed names of family members associated with the breached accounts. Notably, 23andMe asserts that no actual genetic material or DNA records were exposed.

By legal obligations, 23andMe is obligated to notify all affected customers. In response, the company urged all users to reset their passwords in October. Additionally, it now mandates two-step verification for all users, a security measure implemented following an internal investigation.

While the findings of this inquiry, conducted with the assistance of third-party forensics experts, are yet to be disclosed, 23andMe anticipates incurring expenses ranging from $1 to $2 million related to the breach.

Beyond providing family tree reports, 23andMe extends its services to genetic health risk tests for chronic diseases and cancers. The company also facilitates participation in clinical research programs through its research arm.

Concerns about data privacy and the safeguarding of digital assets may influence the company’s financial standing, particularly if customers become hesitant to use services involving sensitive medical information.

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