Beacon Transcript – As Yahoo has yet to formally admit to the possible data breach of their systems, Verizon, the company set out to buy the Internet giant has allegedly demanded a hefty $1 billion drop in price as Yahoo continues to struggle with user security issues.
The two mammoth companies are currently discussing the terms and condition for Verizon’s future acquisition that had already been heavily rumored but only just formally announced come July. As Verizon continues to invest in the area, with just last year having bought AOL for a price of $4.4 billion, words have emerged that their $4.8 billion offer for Yahoo could get a $1 billion reduction after Yahoo may have just admitted to a possible data breach.
The security breach is thought to have occurred sometimes in 2014, with Yahoo only just discovering it this past year. In September, the company confirmed that a number of over 500 million users may have been affected by the data breach, the intruded upon information including amongst others names, birthdays, and email addresses. Another target of the stolen data were the encrypted/decrypted answers demanded by security questions. Even if the stolen passwords have since been encrypted, the issue still remains as the additional information taken beside them could easily be used in identity theft schemes.
The possible breach is thought to have been discovered in July, when the Verizon deal was still being negotiated, with Yahoo declaring in August that it had taken notice of the hacking rumors flying around and that their security team was currently investigating the issue. As of September, the company issued as part of their official sale disclosure a proxy statement which stated that no third-party claims of such a breach had been made, which may just cause concerns as to their public representation truthfulness.
It would also seem that this is not Yahoo’s only cyber problem. This same week, the company was accused of breaching their users’ privacy at the request of an intelligence agency, without even trying to fight it. Marissa Mayer, the company’s CEO is once again put to blame in the problem as she reportedly followed the agency’s request instead of going for a court order and defense of their user data. Instead, it is believed that the same Meyer asked for a custom mail-scanning program that would scan its users’ last emails, without even informing their security engineers or including the request in their annual transparency report.
The possible data breach and email scans questions could cause a serious turn in the Verizon-Yahoo sale as the former could as well argue that the recent disclosures affect the latter’s brand and thus stock value, so the question remains as to how the sale will unfold.
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