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January 18th, 2011 User Emails And Passwords Might Have Been Compromised

Trapster, an online service which uses crowdsourcing to warn drivers about police speed traps, enforcement cameras and other road hazards, has notified its users that their email addresses and passwords might have been compromised.

Trapster allows its users to report and confirm speed traps from a variety of mobile devices including smartphones, GPS devices and iPods. People who don’t have a supported device can still opt to keep themselves informed via SMS notifications. The service has seen wide coverage in the media since 2009 and now prides itself on serving a little over 10 million users.

However, the company has sent a notification through Peer360, an email communications firm, to alert its users that their credentials might have been exposed during a recent security breach.

“The Trapster team has recently learned that our website has been the target of a hacking attempt, and it is possible that your email address and password were compromised. We have taken, and continue to take, preventative measures to avoid future incidents but we are recommending that you change your Trapster password,” the email reads. The company also warns people who used the same password on other sites – unfortunately, a common practice – to change it there too.

If past incidents are any indication, the breach could spell trouble for a lot of people. After a database of 1.3 million user emails and passwords was stolen from Gawker Media in December, corresponding accounts from other websites, like Twitter, ended up being abused.

In a FAQ document accompanying the notification email, Trapster revealed that while a compromise did occur on its website, it couldn’t determine if the user credentials were actually accessed by the hackers. Because of this, the incident was treated with the worst case scenario in mind. However the company has not received any reports of account information being misused so far.

One interesting aspect is that aside from the email notification, there is no mention of the security incident on Trapster’s website, blog or Twitter account.

Credit: News

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