What Bitly Breach Means for You

If you use Twitter, you may also use Bitly. And if you use Bitly, you need to be aware of a breach that may disable both your Twitter and Facebook accounts.

In a blog post, the link-shortening service warned users that Bitly account credentials have been compromised. Specifically, user e-mail addresses, passwords, API keys and OAuth tokens have been breached. That amounts to a pain in the neck for social media managers, and for hard core tweeters.

EUWe have no indication at this time that any accounts have been accessed without permission,EU Bitly CEO Mark Josephson said in the post. EUWe have taken steps to ensure the security of all accounts, including disconnecting all usersEU Facebook and Twitter accounts. All users can safely reconnect these accounts at their next login.EU

WhatEUs Really Happening?

Josephson is recommending all Bitly users change their API keys and OAuth tokens, reset passwords, and reconnect Facebook and Twitter accounts. Bitly offered step-by-step instructions on how to make those changes.

EUWe invalidated all credentials within Facebook and Twitter,EU he continued. EUAlthough users may see their Facebook and Twitter accounts connected to their Bitly account, it is not possible to publish to these accounts until users reconnect their Facebook and Twitter profiles.EU

According to independent security researcher Graham Cluley, what happened remains something of a mystery. He notes that no details are shared about precisely what information the hackers may have snatched.

EUFor instance, if passwords were compromised, were they in plaintext or hashed?EU he asked in a blog post. EUIf they were hashed, was it done securely with salting and other techniques to make it trickier for hackers to crack them?EU

As Cluley sees it, access to Bitly accounts might be attractive to criminals, because many are connected to usersEU Facebook and Twitter profiles, potentially opening the door to sending spam links and...

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