Disney+ 'hack' panic stresses need to use unique passwords

Disney+ accounts are already popping up on the Dark Web

Credit: Dreamstime

The scary headlines started popping up almost immediately. “Thousands of hacked Disney+ accounts are already for sale on hacking forums,” ZDNet proclaimed last week.

This morning, the BBC followed up with “Disney+ fans without answers after thousands hacked.” Well, I’ve got an answer for you, and it’s one you’ve probably heard before. Stop reusing passwords across multiple services and websites.

Both sites found “thousands” of Disney+ logins available on the Dark Web—just over 4,000, in the BBC’s case.

When the publications reached out to affected customers, some admitted that they reused existing passwords for Disney+, while some denied it.

But given the low number of so-called “hacks”—a few thousand confirmed for a service that already boasts over 10 million users is a drop in a pool, as RockPaperShotgun cofounder John Walker points out—it seems likely that bad password behaviour is more to blame than a breach on Disney’s part.

Data breaches are shockingly common these days. If you reuse your login credentials across sites and services, a breach of just one can grant hackers access to all your accounts.

CyberInt researcher Jason Hill told the BBC that this indeed seems to be the case with the Disney+ credentials for sale in the Web’s seedy underbelly. These accounts weren’t “hacked,” rather, their owners probably got sloppy.

I get it. Memorising passwords sucks, and everything needs one these days. Fortunately, there’s a solution: Password managers. These programs keep track of all your logins, input them when needed, and can even create randomised passwords for each site and service you use.

They’re great, and they make using unique passwords a breeze. Better yet, password managers are pretty cheap, and many even come free if you only need a device or two covered. PCWorld’s guide to the best password managers can help you find the best one to fit your needs.

Activating two-factor authentication—which demands a text- or app-based code in addition to your password—is a good idea for critical accounts too.

We’ve got a guide to the best two-factor authentication apps and hardware, too. Finally, if you’ve been reusing passwords and want to batten down the hatches even further after using a password manager to generate unique logins for your accounts, check out what to do after a data breach.

You won’t find any tinfoil hats, but you will find information about burner cards and specialised data recovery email addresses if you want to go even deeper down the rabbit hole.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Disney

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Brad Chacos

Brad Chacos

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Skywatcher Dobsonian 8″ Collapsible Telescope

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Whodunnit™ Duo-Scope MFL-007 Microscope Kit

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Logitech Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?