Target, Home Depot, VTech all have something in common besides taking our money from time to time. These companies (and several more) were breached by hackers in 2013, 2014 and 2015 respectively.
A “breach” is an incident where a hacker illegally obtains data from a vulnerable system, usually by exploiting weaknesses in the software. All the data in the site comes from website breaches which have been made publicly available. The information hackers seek ranges from data such as addresses, phone numbers, credit card information, social security numbers and email accounts.
Here is a tip:
To see if your email account has been released into the wild because of a company that was breached check out: https://haveibeenpwned.com/ , enter your email address, click Pwned? and see what it comes back with.
Hopefully your email doesn’t show up on the Pwned list. If it does (like my Gmail account did as seen in the screenshot) make sure you change your password and monitor any accounts associated with that respective email account.
Credit (https://haveibeenpwned.com – Troy Hunt)