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Plex data breach: Streaming service says user emails, passwords were accessed by third party

Plex, the popular streaming-media service, alerted users of a data breach in which a hacker was able to access private information – including usernames and passwords. The company said it is requiring Plex users to reset their passwords as a result of the incident.

In an email to Plex users early Wednesday, the company said, “Yesterday, we discovered suspicious activity on one of our databases. We immediately began an investigation and it does appear that a third-party was able to access a limited subset of data that includes emails, usernames, and encrypted passwords.”

The message continued, “Even though all account passwords that could have been accessed were hashed and secured in accordance with best practices, out of an abundance of caution we are requiring all Plex accounts to have their password reset.” Plex also recommended enabling two-factor authentication for additional account security.

According to Plex, credit card information and other payment data is not stored on its servers and therefore were not exposed in this incident.

Asked for comment, a Plex spokesperson said in a statement to Variety, “We have identified and addressed how the security breach occurred to ensure that the security of all of our systems is further hardened to prevent future incursions. Member security and privacy is our utmost priority and we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this situation may have caused.”

In the user discussion forums on Plex’s support site, multiple users early Wednesday reported that they were unable to change their password because the service was down. According to Plex’s status page, it implemented a fix for a problem affecting its systems at around 7 a.m. ET Wednesday, a little more than an hour after indicating the company was looking into the issue.

Plex, founded in 20009, provides an aggregated interface for streaming services, including those users subscribe to, as well as peronal media collections. The company says it provides access to more than 50,000 free streaming movies and TV shows on-demand, as well as several hundred free-to-stream live TV channels. The company’s content partners include A+E Networks, AMC, Crackle, Crown Media Family Networks, Lionsgate, MGM, Paramount, Sinclair Broadcast Group and Sony Pictures Television. The service is available in more than 180 countries.

Last year, Plex announced that it raised more than $50 million in Series C funding from investment bank Intercap; additional investors include VC firm Kleiner Perkins. Variety

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