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HomeAmericaMillions Affected in 23andMe Data Breach: What You Need to Know

Millions Affected in 23andMe Data Breach: What You Need to Know


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In a significant blow to consumer privacy, personal information and genetic data of millions of 23andMe customers were compromised in a data breach that occurred in October 2023. The breach has raised concerns about the security of sensitive health information and the potential for misuse.

Here’s a breakdown of what happened, the implications, and steps you can take to protect yourself:

What Happened?

  • Credential Stuffing Attack: Hackers exploited a tactic known as credential stuffing, where they used breached login credentials from other websites to access 23andMe accounts.
  • Scope of the Breach:
    • Over 6.9 million profiles were affected.
    • Exposed information included:
      • Ancestry data
      • Family tree information
      • Birth years
      • Geographic locations
      • In some cases, health data

Potential Implications:

  • Discrimination: Genetic data could be used to discriminate against individuals in employment, insurance, or other areas.
  • Identity Theft: Personal information could be used for financial fraud or other crimes.
  • Targeted Attacks: Hackers could use genetic data to craft personalized phishing scams or cyber-attacks.

23andMe’s Response:

  • Forced Password Resets: All users were required to reset their passwords.
  • Two-Factor Authentication: 23andMe implemented mandatory two-factor authentication for all accounts.
  • Investigation and Cooperation: The company is working with law enforcement to investigate the breach.

Protecting Yourself:

  • Change Passwords: Use strong, unique passwords for all online accounts and avoid reusing passwords.
  • Enable Two-Factor Authentication: Add an extra layer of security to your accounts.
  • Monitor Accounts: Regularly check your account activity for any suspicious behavior.
  • Limit Shared Information: Be cautious about the personal information you share online.
  • Stay Informed: Stay up-to-date on cybersecurity news and best practices.


The 23andMe data breach serves as a stark reminder of the importance of safeguarding sensitive information, especially when it comes to genetic data. By taking proactive steps to protect your personal data, you can help mitigate the risks associated with potential breaches.

Ouaissou DEMBELE
Ouaissou DEMBELEhttps://cybercory.com
Ouaissou DEMBELE is an accomplished cybersecurity professional and the Editor-In-Chief of cybercory.com. He has over 10 years of experience in the field, with a particular focus on Ethical Hacking, Data Security & GRC. Currently, Ouaissou serves as the Co-founder & Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at Saintynet, a leading provider of IT solutions and services. In this role, he is responsible for managing the company's cybersecurity strategy, ensuring compliance with relevant regulations, and identifying and mitigating potential threats, as well as helping the company customers for better & long term cybersecurity strategy. Prior to his work at Saintynet, Ouaissou held various positions in the IT industry, including as a consultant. He has also served as a speaker and trainer at industry conferences and events, sharing his expertise and insights with fellow professionals. Ouaissou holds a number of certifications in cybersecurity, including the Cisco Certified Network Professional - Security (CCNP Security) and the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), ITIL. With his wealth of experience and knowledge, Ouaissou is a valuable member of the cybercory team and a trusted advisor to clients seeking to enhance their cybersecurity posture.


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