Zappos Gets Zapped by Hackers

Las Vegas—Zappos customer? Then you’re one of the 24 million people who received an email Sunday to change your password.

Due to a hacking incident, online thieves have made off with “some” customer’s account information and personal details (possibly including a customer’s name, email, billing and shipping address, and the last four digits of their credit card, plus a “cryptographically scrambled” version of their password).

According to Zappos, which is owned by Amazon, no vital credit card information was obtained.

“We’ve spent over 12 years building our reputation, brand, and trust with our customers,” wrote CEO Tony Hsieh in a  statement to all employees. “It’s painful to see us take so many steps back due to a single incident. I suppose the one saving grace is that the database that stores our customers’ critical credit card and other payment data was not affected or accessed.”

Zappos took immediate measures to alert customers and calm fears.

Here is the email that was sent to consumers:

First, the bad news:

We are writing to let you know that there may have been illegal and unauthorized access to some of your customer account information on Zappos.com, including one or more of the following: your name, e-mail address, billing and shipping addresses, phone number, the last four digits of your credit card number (the standard information you find on receipts), and/or your cryptographically scrambled password (but not your actual password).

THE BETTER NEWS: The database that stores your critical credit card and other payment data was NOT affected or accessed.

SECURITY PRECAUTIONS: For your protection and to prevent unauthorized access, we have expired and reset your password so you can create a new password. Please follow the instructions below to create a new password.

We also recommend that you change your password on any other web site where you use the same or a similar password. As always, please remember that Zappos.com will never ask you for personal or account information in an e-mail. Please exercise caution if you receive any emails or phone calls that ask for personal information or direct you to a web site where you are asked to provide personal information.

PLEASE CREATE A NEW PASSWORD: We have expired and reset your password so you can create a new password. Please create a new password by visiting Zappos.com and clicking on the “Create a New Password” link in the upper right corner of the web site and follow the steps from there.

We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. If you have any additional questions about this process, please email us at passwordchange@zappos.com

In response to the high volume of panicked consumers, Zappos shut down its call center and will only answer comments via email.

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Lauren Parker, Editor, Accessories Magazine

As Editor of Accessories Magazine for the past 12 years, Lauren Parker has covered accessories both from a retail business perspective and a fashion point of view. In previous full-time magazine jobs and freelance gigs, she’s written about practically every angle of fashion lifestyle living, including women's fashion accessories, fine jewelry, Caribbean travel, private jets, Hampton’s real estate, the New York art scene, the bridal industry, men’s lifestyle and being a mom. She loves meeting designers and seeing how their latest offerings capture the current zeitgeist and fit into the entire cultural and social picture.

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