A Year Ago: Virgin shuts down all email after hacking scare

First published: Mon, 10 Jan 2000 17:42:01 GMT

When does an ISP resort to snail mail? Ask Virgin.net's customers...

A hacking scare at Virgin.net Sunday forced the company to close all email accounts and some customers were also hit with restricted Internet access. Nearly a quarter of the company's 800,000 subscribers had no Net access Sunday, while email remains inactive.

A statement within the customer services section of the Virgin.net Web site -- buried three pages deep -- describes the breach: "Virgin Net have (sic) just become aware of a potential security issue that could allow third parties, access to a small number of subscribers' emails."

Although the statement does not reveal details of the security hole or mention whether anyone has actually gained unauthorised access, it does suggests that Virgin.net customers should change their email and dial-up passwords if they are concerned.

In an effort to inform customers of the situation, Virgin.net has resorted to desperate measures, mailing out apologies and explanations via regular post.

Are you a Virgin.net subscriber? Have you been hit by this? Tell the Mailroom