Plex hacker demands Bitcoin ransom for return of data

The hacker is threatening to release the data if a ransom is not paid in bitcoins

Streaming service Plex has reset some users' passwords after a hacker breached a server hosting its forum and blog.

Streaming service Plex has reset some users' passwords after a hacker breached a server hosting its forum and blog.

Video streaming service Plex has reset user passwords after it was breached by a hacker who threatened to release stolen data unless he's paid a ransom.

The company found out on Wednesday that a server hosting its forum and blog had been compromised, Chris Curtis, a Plex support engineer, said in a blog post.

Information including IP addresses, email addresses, private forum messages and encrypted passwords were exposed.

Someone going by the nickname "Savata" claimed responsibility for the breach and threatened to release the data on torrent networks if a ransom wasn't paid in bitcoins.

Savata asked for 9.5 bitcoins (US$2,400) but wrote that the ransom would increase to 14.5 bitcoins if it wasn't paid by Friday, according to a copy of the message posted on Reddit.

"I don't care who the BTC comes from as long as the payment is made: no data will be released," Savata wrote.

Companies often ignore such extortion attempts because it creates an incentive for other cybercriminals to try the same ploy.

Curtis said the passwords were salted, a security measure that makes it harder for hackers to convert them back into plain text. Payment card data was not exposed, he wrote, and Plex had "no reason to believe that any other parts of our system were compromised."

He reminded users they should choose strong, unique passwords for each online service they use. Hackers often try to see if a leaked password will unlock other Web services, since people have a tendency to reuse the same ones.

It is possible to converted encrypted passwords into the original text using password cracking tools. Long and complex passwords, however, are more resistant to cracking since it takes more time and computing power.

Plex's forum will remain offline while the company completes its investigation.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags securitydata breachPlex

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2018

With determination and drive, you achieve outstanding performance! Get Bitdefender Total Security 2018 Now!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?