What to do if your Gawker password was violated

If you think your Gawker account has been compromised by this weekend's attack and you want to cancel it, you can't.

Also read: Gawker Media hacked

"Currently account deletion is not available. We will, however, give you this option as soon as possible," according to an FAQ posted on lifehacker.com, one of Gawker Media's sites.

But it does offer some tips about what you can do if you are among the million members and registered commenters whose logins may have been compromised by the attack, which was possibly retaliation for Gawker's condemnation of distributed DoS attacks launched by supporters of WikiLeaks.

What to do:

* Change your password. Gawker sites do support this.

* Change your password at other sites where you used the same password that you used on a Gawker Media site.

* If you forgot your password and your attempt to retrieve it failed, try again. Gawker Media shut down some of its e-mail servers temporarily to deal with problems.

* If your password isn't working despite not having an e-mail address associated with your account, hold tight. Gawker recognizes this as a problem and is trying to figure out what to do about it.

If you wonder whether your password was compromised, here's how you can find out:

* Assume it has been if you joined Gawker, Gizmodo, Jalopnik, Jezebel, Kotaku, Lifehacker, Deadspin, io9, or Fleshbot. The only exception is if you joined via Facebook Connect. Gawker Media doesn't store those passwords.

* Look for an e-mail from Gawker Media notifying you of the breach. They're trying to send them to every member for whom they have e-mail addresses.

Gawkers says it's hired a security firm to boost security on its sites.

Read more about wide area network in Network World's Wide Area Network section.

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