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LastPass Password Service Hacked 268

Posted by timothy
from the oh-were-your-eggs-in-that-basket? dept.
Trailrunner7 writes "LastPass, a popular Web based password management firm, advised its customers to change the password they use to access the service following what the company said are signs that its network may have been compromised."
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LastPass Password Service Hacked

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  • KeePass (Score:5, Informative)

    by x*yy*x (2058140) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @01:55PM (#36038734)
    KeePass [keepass.info] is really the best tool for handling passwords. Open source, crypted database, easy to use (CTRL+B for username to clipboard, CTRL+C for password), contains grouping and generates safe different passwords for every site. It's actually a great example of a well done open source project.

    Using an online service for something like your passwords is just incredibly stupid. It's a really well known place to hack for someone who wants lots of passwords. Backup your encrypted password container to your own place, but never something like this.
    • Some of us don't use windows.

      • Ahem [keepass.info].

        Hint: try scrolling down. It's probably already in the repository for your distro if you use Linux.

        • by Rich0 (548339)

          Really? I use Linux - the Chrome OS distro. Didn't notice it available for that...

          • by praxis (19962)

            Yes, it's *probably* already in the repository for your distro if you use Linux. If it's not, why not contribute it?

            • by Rich0 (548339)

              Simple - the only repository that exists for Chrome OS is the Google Web Store. It only supports Chrome applications or extensions, and Keepass has not been implemented as a Chrome application or extension. You don't need to use the Web Store, but Chrome OS still only runs Chrome applications or extensions.

              Lastpass is available as a Chrome extension, and works just fine.

    • by RobDude (1123541)

      If you think KeePass isn't vulnerable to attacks you just aren't being creative enough.

    • by izomiac (815208)
      IMHO, it's better to never write them down and just generate them algorithmically based on the site's domain or a memorable keyword. Several years ago I just kept a tabula recta [lifehacker.com] in my wallet. Nowadays, you can use something like SuperGenPass [supergenpass.com].

      Personally, I wrote my own equivalent of SuperGenPass that addresses some of the security concerns [stackoverflow.com]. That said, I use PassPack [passpack.com] with a tediously strong password to keep a backup in case I inadvertantly break compatibility, and a copy of the generator on my website.
      • by airjrdn (681898)
        What do you do when a site gets hacked and your algorithm can no longer be used there? How do you remember that siteA now uses algorithm 2, etc.?
    • by Radhruin (875377)

      They will only get lots of passwords from people who are foolish enough to select a brute forcible password as their master. Picking a simple master password is stupid. Storing encrypted data on the internet isn't necessarily stupid.

      Not to mention, if you generate random passwords for every service, it's not much labor to just go ahead and generate new ones when situations like this occur. All LastPass clients automatically update to use the new passwords, no big deal.

      IMO the convenience of having a central

    • I've used both pwsafe and KeePass... I never cared for KeePass, and had just moved all my passwords back to pwsafe when I found out about LastPass, got convinced it was "secure enough" by Steve Gibson, and never looked back.

      The big deal for me at the time, once past the "secure enough" thing, was that pwsafe was Windows only. KeePass did not have a means of syncing passwords that might be changed on multiple machines. Even with pwsafe, I had to carry my database around and sync it with my other machines

    • I use Password Gorilla [github.com]. Written in Tcl/Tk, has standalone downloads for Linux, Mac OS X, Windows. Been using it for the last few years, works well for me.

      From the wiki:
      Password Gorilla is a Tcl/Tk application which can run on Linux, Windows and Mac OS X. The source files written are supposed to be compatible between platforms. They are tested to run on Linux kernel (less than or = to) 2.6.30.5, Windows XP, Windows 7 and Mac OS X 10.6. So it is possible to work with this password manager in heterogenous en

    • by luder (923306) *

      I'm very happy with KeePass. It enabled me to have a poor man's authentication token:

      Instead of using a password to unlock the database, I use a key file stored in an SD card. I mapped one of my laptop's multimedia buttons to the hot key that triggers the global auto-type feature, so that when I need to authenticate somewhere I just have to press that button and hit enter to unlock the database. The authentication is done automatically and the database stays unlocked for 5 minutes. When I leave the computer

    • Stop spewing crap when you know nothing of the case!

      "Using an online service for something like your passwords is just incredibly stupid. It's a really well known place to hack for someone who wants lots of passwords. Backup your encrypted password container to your own place, but never something like this."

      Hey, retardo, don't you think the people who made it know this? All of your password are stored on their system ENCRYPTED. They are encrypted on YOUR computer, with a password only YOU (not them) before

  • LastPass is using the same security group as Sony....
    • by ArhcAngel (247594)
      Actually one of the admins at LastPass had a PSN account and used the same password.
    • by makomk (752139)

      Apparently not. They appear to be an awful lot more paranoid than Sony...

  • Was the administrator password for LastPass "password"?
  • by karnal (22275) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @02:05PM (#36038946)

    Note: This is taken from http://blog.lastpass.com/2011/05/lastpass-security-notification.html [lastpass.com]

    ***f****f****f******f******f**f**f*f*******f******f*f**f******f******f********
    We noticed an issue yesterday and wanted to alert you to it. As a precaution, we're also forcing you to change your master password.

    We take a close look at our logs and try to explain every anomaly we see. Tuesday morning we saw a network traffic anomaly for a few minutes from one of our non-critical machines. These happen occasionally, and we typically identify them as an employee or an automated script.

    In this case, we couldn't find that root cause. After delving into the anomaly we found a similar but smaller matching traffic anomaly from one of our databases in the opposite direction (more traffic was sent from the database compared to what was received on the server). Because we can't account for this anomaly either, we're going to be paranoid and assume the worst: that the data we stored in the database was somehow accessed. We know roughly the amount of data transfered and that it's big enough to have transfered people's email addresses, the server salt and their salted password hashes from the database. We also know that the amount of data taken isn't remotely enough to have pulled many users encrypted data blobs.

    If you have a strong, non-dictionary based password or pass phrase, this shouldn't impact you - the potential threat here is brute forcing your master password using dictionary words, then going to LastPass with that password to get your data. Unfortunately not everyone picks a master password that's immune to brute forcing.

    To counter that potential threat, we're going to force everyone to change their master passwords. Additionally, we're going to want an indication that you're you, by either ensuring that you're coming from an IP block you've used before or by validating your email address. The reason is that if an attacker had your master password through a brute force method, LastPass still wouldn't give access to this theoretical attacker because they wouldn't have access to your email account or your IP.

    We realize this may be an overreaction and we apologize for the disruption this will cause, but we'd rather be paranoid and slightly inconvenience you than to be even more sorry later.

    We're also taking this as an opportunity to roll out something we've been planning for a while: PBKDF2 using SHA-256 on the server with a 256-bit salt utilizing 100,000 rounds. We'll be rolling out a second implementation of it with the client too. In more basic terms, this further mitigates the risk if we ever see something suspicious like this in the future. As we continue to grow we'll continue to find ways to reduce how large a target we are.

    For those of you who are curious: we don't have very much data indicating what potentially happened and what attack vector could have been used and are continuing to investigate it. We had our asterisk phone server more open to UDP than it needed to be which was an issue our auditing found but we couldn't find any indications on the box itself of tampering, the database didn't show any changes escalating anyone to premium or administrators, and none of the log files give us much to go on.

    We don't have a lot that indicates an issue occurred but it's prudent to assume where there's smoke there could be fire. We're rebuilding the boxes in question and have shut down and moved services from them in the meantime. The source code running the website and plugins has been verified against our source code repositories, and we have further determined from offline snapshots and cryptographic hashes in the repository that there was no tampering with the repository itself.

    Again, we apologize for the inconvenience caused and will continue to take every precaution in protecting user data.

    The LastPass Team.

    UPDATE 1: We're overloaded handling support and

    • by Captain Spam (66120) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @02:26PM (#36039416) Homepage

      In this case, we couldn't find that root cause. After delving into the anomaly we found a similar but smaller matching traffic anomaly from one of our databases in the opposite direction (more traffic was sent from the database compared to what was received on the server). Because we can't account for this anomaly either, we're going to be paranoid and assume the worst: that the data we stored in the database was somehow accessed. We know roughly the amount of data transfered and that it's big enough to have transfered people's email addresses, the server salt and their salted password hashes from the database. We also know that the amount of data taken isn't remotely enough to have pulled many users encrypted data blobs.

      Gotta be honest here: Even if this WASN'T anything, if I had trusted my passwords for everything to some other party like this, I'd very well want them to be more than a bit paranoid in protecting it. So I say, kudos.

    • This is really exemplary action; they're not entirely certain that there even is a threat to customers' data, but they take all the precautions they can and inform their users of the possiblity of a threat. We can only wish other companies were as careful!

    • by Daetrin (576516)
      Well that's certainly a lot more informative than what Sony had to tell their users about what was compromised and whether it was encrypted, hashed, or totally clear.
    • Somebody forward this to Sony.

    • Reading this makes me more likely to use their service. Well played. Seriously.

  • I use this thing called my brain to store passwords. Sometimes I lose one, but it never gets hacked.
    • by Anonymous Psychopath (18031) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @02:17PM (#36039230) Homepage

      Either you have an excellent memory or you're reusing the same password on multiple sites. If you're a mere mortal, like me, and you don't want to reuse a few passwords over and over again, you need a password manager.

      • by Ruke (857276)

        Or you could use the same password-salt on multiple sites, with a unique, easy-to-remember base for each site. For example, my base could be "RjZg#sl1", which would produce RjZslshg#sl1 for slashdot, RjZgglg#sl1 for gmail, RjZtwttrg#sl1 for twitter, etc.

        You need to memorize eight characters, and one process (remove consonants from service name), and you've got a secure, unique password for each website. It's not perfect - if someone is specifically targeting you, and gets two or three of your passwords in c

        • by Dice (109560)

          I find that sentences describing my thoughts about the service in question and mapped to leet-speak are easy to remember for a large number of sites.

          Some hypothetical examples:

          1. Slashdot: d0tc0m1.0d1n0s4ur
          2. Twitter: 0hg0dwh0c4r3z4b0utth1zsh1t
          3. Flickr: 3y3y4mh3r3f0rth3b00b13z--3y3m34n4rt

        • by airjrdn (681898)
          What do you do when a site gets hacked and your algorithm can no longer be used there? How do you remember that siteA now uses algorithm 2, etc.? I just don't see how that's useful long term.
      • I have a slightly different approach. I have one password with 2 variations I use for most sites, but I have a third password that I only use for my e-mail account. Thus even if I lost access to one of the other sites I could still reset the password via e-mail and then I'd proceed to change the passwords on all the other sites I use, too.

      • Either you have an excellent memory or you're reusing the same password on multiple sites. If you're a mere mortal, like me, and you don't want to reuse a few passwords over and over again, you need a password manager.

        Or, If you're a code like me, you wrote a javascript:sha1( salt + get_master_pw() + host ); bookmarklet [ubuntu.com] which enables you to use the same password everywhere, but generate a site specific hash that you enter into the PW field.

        Note: I would use someone else's PW hasher plugin, but I can re-code my own system from scratch in any URL bar, text editor, command shell or programming language to re-gain access to my codes in a worst case scenario...

    • so how many brains have you lost so far??

      • by Thud457 (234763)
        All but one of them.

        One, his name is Spock, would also have been an acceptable answer.
    • INCEPTION!
    • by avgjoe62 (558860)

      For now....

      Army builds brain reading machine. [gizadeathstar.com]

    • by lennier (44736)

      I use this thing called my brain to store passwords.

      I tried that too, but then this happened [youtube.com].

  • Apparently the hackers got only paswords, and not passwords. No big deal then.

  • "...advised its customers to change the password they use to access the service..."

    Wow, I only have to change one password? Whew, that's a relief! For a minute there, I thought I had to change them all. (/sarcasm)

    Consolidated password management works, as long as YOU maintain 100% control. Use Truecrypt locally for securing your password file. Sync the encrypted file to the cloud of you want an "online" backup.

    • by mailman-zero (730254) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @02:16PM (#36039204) Homepage

      Consolidated password management works, as long as YOU maintain 100% control. Use Truecrypt locally for securing your password file. Sync the encrypted file to the cloud of you want an "online" backup.

      LastPass is basically the exact same thing. It's encrypted locally and sent to them AFTER encryption. They don't store the plaintext passwords. The danger is the same either way if a user doesn't use a strong enough password.

      • by Rich0 (548339)

        LastPass is basically the exact same thing. It's encrypted locally and sent to them AFTER encryption. They don't store the plaintext passwords. The danger is the same either way if a user doesn't use a strong enough password.

        The problem I have with their site is that they use the same password to encrypt your password database that you use to log into the site. So, if somebody puts the equivalent of a keylogger on their server they get everything.

        They should have one password to authenticate to the server, and another password to encrypt the passwords that get uploaded to the site. In fact, you'd only need both when logging in from a client that doesn't use Lastpass, since the latter could safely store the former.

    • Seriously. I can't stand the thought of someone else having every password I use for everything. I use a system to generate passwords in a semi-hard-to-predict fashion for services I don't really care about, and have a number of 'strong' passwords for things that are important. Those passwords (and the information on where to use them) gets stored in a TrueCrypt container that I periodically update and sync with my VPS and my Dropbox. The TrueCrypt volume key isn't recorded anywhere - it's in my head, which
      • by llZENll (545605)

        Its just like anything else, be smart about it. It doesn't force you to use it for every site so don't. I use it for all my forums, some email, some social sites, basically anything that if stolen, doesn't matter, well over 100 sites. I don't use it for anything connected to any part of my finances, credit cards, or my big selling or buying sites (ebay,amazone,etc), a much smaller 10-20 sites. Using it this way is worry free and does simplify things. You still have multiple passwords, but at least the

  • by binkzz (779594) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @02:10PM (#36039092) Journal
    It isn't as bad as it seems, and kudos for them to be upfront and open about it:

    We noticed an issue yesterday and wanted to alert you to it. As a precaution, we're also forcing you to change your master password. We take a close look at our logs and try to explain every anomaly we see. Tuesday morning we saw a network traffic anomaly for a few minutes from one of our non-critical machines. These happen occasionally, and we typically identify them as an employee or an automated script. In this case, we couldn't find that root cause. After delving into the anomaly we found a similar but smaller matching traffic anomaly from one of our databases in the opposite direction (more traffic was sent from the database compared to what was received on the server). Because we can't account for this anomaly either, we're going to be paranoid and assume the worst: that the data we stored in the database was somehow accessed. We know roughly the amount of data transfered and that it's big enough to have transfered people's email addresses, the server salt and their salted password hashes from the database. We also know that the amount of data taken isn't remotely enough to have pulled many users encrypted data blobs. If you have a strong, non-dictionary based password or pass phrase, this shouldn't impact you - the potential threat here is brute forcing your master password using dictionary words, then going to LastPass with that password to get your data. Unfortunately not everyone picks a master password that's immune to brute forcing. To counter that potential threat, we're going to force everyone to change their master passwords. Additionally, we're going to want an indication that you're you, by either ensuring that you're coming from an IP block you've used before or by validating your email address. The reason is that if an attacker had your master password through a brute force method, LastPass still wouldn't give access to this theoretical attacker because they wouldn't have access to your email account or your IP.

    • by lwsimon (724555)

      Wow. I'm going to check out their service then - that's obscenely ethical.

      • by dreampod (1093343)

        That was my reaction too. If they are this cautious about unexplained traffic then maybe a online password service (run by them) isn't the disaster I thought it would be.

  • Headline Edit (Score:5, Informative)

    by mailman-zero (730254) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @02:22PM (#36039332) Homepage

    LastPass Pasword Service may have been Hacked.

    This is a good story, but the story isn't that they were definitely hacked. It's entirely possible that the anomalous data transfers they mentioned were caused by internal testing and not properly documented, based on the limited information we have available.

    Here is a transcript wherein Steve Gibson talks at length about why LastPass is secure [grc.com].

  • I'm a LastPass user and last night I was forced to change my master password. Initially I was a bit suspicious about the request, so I took all the measures to make sure it was a genuine request from LastPass.com. When I was sure it was a safe request, I changed my master password to something even stronger than it was. I'm a paying user for their premium services, and in my opinion I must admit that their reaction to that casualty and possible data breach has been very open and reasonable. I would be very
  • ... does anyone believe storing sensitive informaiton in the "cloud" or the Internet?

    • Maybe you store your passwords in your huge brain, but if you're using something like KeePass or 1Password on your computer, you're still storing your passwords on the internet. Granted, they're not in an amalgamated "hack me" target like LastPass, but it's not like they're securely offline, taped to your monitor.
    • by praxis (19962)

      Your question is missing a component. So why does anyone believe X what? Where X is "storing sensitive information in the 'cloud' or the Internet"? Is a good idea, presumably?

  • Oh for the love of god, this is way out of hand.

    They weren't "hacked", they saw a tiny anomaly in their network traffic (which honestly, most companies wouldn't even have noticed), and decided to notify you about it and handle it in the most paranoid way possible. It's such a small thing that I wouldn't have expected most companies to even tell anyone it happened.

    But somehow them behaving in a very commendable way for a security company has blown up into an absolute PR nightmare for them, with sites lik
  • They just got slasdotted, efuct, dugg, and twitter bombed all at once. Read more [lastpass.com].

    • And here is the actual text, for those of you trying to avoid irony in your diet.

      Update 2, 2:15pm EST:

      Record traffic, plus a rush of people to make password changes is more than we can currently handle.

      We're switching tactics -- if you've made the password change already we'll handle you normally.

      If you haven't the vast majority of you will be logged in using 'offline' mode so you can still use LastPass like normal and get back to your day, only syncing of new password should suffer (and you'll see the bar)

  • LastPass: the one stop hack for all your identity stealing needs.
  • "LastPass, a popular Web based password management firm, advised its customers to change the password

    They need to change the name of the company to "Second to LastPass"?

  • Fuck the PSN hack, who gives a shit about that, 99.9999999% of the time banks will allow me to simlply refute credit card fraudulent purchases. It costs me NOTHING but inconvienience.

    I was a loyal foxmarks user, then xmarks, then they told me I had to use lastpass.
    Well look how this has worked fucking out then, I am PISSED - jesus fuck is there some important passwords in my account.

    For fucks sake.

    • by heypete (60671)

      Being that your passwords haven't been compromised (at least based on the most recent information they've posted), I don't see how this is remotely an issue.

      As they state on their site, "We know roughly the amount of data transfered and that it's big enough to have transfered people's email addresses, the server salt and their salted password hashes from the database. We also know that the amount of data taken isn't remotely enough to have pulled many users encrypted data blobs."

      Best case scenario, there ar

  • It's called, my memory.

    It's so secure, I might not even know the password i use. I like it better that way, don't have any written down passwords, don't have any "cloud" storage of a password vault, don't have an encrypted file/database of passwords i use.

    Sure, on the occasion I have to retype in passwords till I get the right one, but not that often.

    Using a program for passwords, reminds me of this little true story:

    My buddy kept all his phone numbers on his Atari 130XE, which I said, "What if you don't

The use of anthropomorphic terminology when dealing with computing systems is a symptom of professional immaturity. -- Edsger Dijkstra

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