Microsoft confirms Hotmail lost thousands of passwords to phishing scheme

Microsoft admits thousands of Windows Live Hotmail account passwords are compromised.

Microsoft is admitting that thousands of Windows Live Hotmail account usernames and passwords have indeed leaked to the Internet as reported by Neowin.net. But the company also said the attack was not caused by an internal security breach. It was the result of a massive phishing attack, reports Computerworld.

The company was firm that its Web-based e-mail service had not been hacked nor was it responsible for the theft of account log-in information stolen. Earlier today, Neowin.net reported that more than 10,000 accounts had been compromised and speculated as to the cause.

Security experts say that if 10,000 passwords were lost, this would be a big attack, but not the biggest on record. Phishing schemes that have netted attackers 50,000 to 75,000 passwords have been recorded, especially when millions of potential accounts are available for attack.

Hotmail has about 400 million users, Microsoft says.

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