17 January 2012

Stratfor reopens website

By Kirk Ladendorf | Wednesday, January 11, 2012, 09:39 AM 

Stratfor, the Austin company that took its website down on Christmas Day after a hacking attack, has reopened the site with bolstered security.
A hacker group called Anonymous claimed credit for the attack and took credit card information belonging to thousands of customers. Some of those credit cards were used to make donations to non-profit groups, including the Red Cross.
Stratfor, which provides geopolitical analysis, said its servers had been damaged in the attack. The company retailed Sec Theory, an Internet security firm, to rebuild its website, email system and internal infrastructure. It also hired CSID, an Austin company that protects against identity theft, to work with its customers at Stratfor’s expense.
The company also has built a new section of its website to tell its story of the hacking attack. The company said it will move its entire e-commerce process to a highly secure third-party system, which will eliminate the need for Stratfor to store credit card information in-house.
The company also hired Verizon Business to conduct a forensic review of the hack and it continues to cooperate with an FBI investigation.
“We did not encrypt credit card files,” said Stratfor CEO George Friedman of the company’s practice before the attack. “That was our failure. As the CEO of Stratfor, I take responsibility. I deeply regret that this occurred and created hardship for our customers and friends.”
By some estimates about 75,000 customers names, addresses and credit card numbers were exposed. One cyber security analyst, John Bumgarner, told the Los Angeles Times that thousands of those names exposed included military personnel, while 212 email addresses were from the FBI and dozens more from the National Security Agency and the Central Intelligence Agency.
The company said its website will be free and accessible for all on a temporary basis, but it will contain only the company’s most recent reports. All archived files will be gradually restored.
Over the next few weeks, the company will communicate with subscribers about how to obtain new, secure passwords and safely engage in credit card transactions.

Source Article: http://goo.gl/AKoI2