Turns out it's not just cartoon fans who want access to Disney+. Hackers have already infiltrated accounts and are offering them for free — or selling them for a small price — online.
According to an investigation by ZDNet, thousands of Disney+ accounts have already been hacked since the streaming service launched November 12. The accounts are reportedly being posted on hacker forums for free and, in some cases, are being sold for $3-11. The cost of a Disney+ subscription is $7 per month.
Users are saying that hackers are accessing their accounts, logging them out of their devices and then changing the account's email and password so they can no longer gain access.
Social media has been filled with users complaining of hacked Disney+ accounts since the day the service launched.
@disneyplus @DisneyPlusHelp Finally got someone to answer, but the call cut out before they resolved anything. I was told they couldn’t restore email address on account, and it sounded like management didn’t believe my account was hacked. #disneyplus #DisneyPlusfail pic.twitter.com/Ol79qb9yOb
— sarawr_jean (@sarawr_jean) November 12, 2019
@DisneyPlusHelp I feel like I got hacked disney plus help me pic.twitter.com/m4Zf75kM9h
— Christian (@Christi58385720) November 14, 2019
BE CAREFUL WITH YOUR DISNEY+ ACCOUNT! my uncle just notified me that someone hacked into his @disneyplus account and they changed all his information! he can’t do anything now and he is unable to change his password or delete his account now! #DisneyPlus pic.twitter.com/e6VNJJlskW
— 𝐵𝓇𝑒𝓃𝒸𝓎 𝒱𝒾𝓁𝓁𝒶 (@swrxninbrency) November 17, 2019
wtf @disneyplus!!! How is it that someone has hacked into my account? I’ve been getting passcodes sent to my email consistently since last night and I open my account today to see someone has changed my password and created numerous profiles in my account. What’s going on? pic.twitter.com/V2Jr5qNgfM
— Mariah Robinson (@mariahland) November 17, 2019
i think my disney+ account was hacked... send help pic.twitter.com/xzIT1VF0cY
— E. (@erikalynfred) November 18, 2019
It's unclear how hackers gained access to the accounts, but according to ZDNet, it appears "in some cases hackers gained access to accounts by using email and password combos leaked at other sites, while in other cases the Disney+ credentials might have been obtained from users infected with keylogging or info-stealing malware."
The reports of hacked accounts follow an already rocky start for Disney+. Users said they couldn't access the streaming service the day it launched and a spokesperson for Disney+ confirmed more people than expected tried to access the app, leading to connectivity issues.
“The consumer demand for Disney+ has exceeded our high expectations," a Disney spokesperson said November 12. "We are pleased by this incredible response and are working to quickly resolve the current user issue. We appreciate your patience.”
Disney hasn't released a statement on the hacked accounts, but the Disney+ help account on Twitter has been very active in replying to complaints.
The Better Business Bureau offers the following tips to protect yourself against hackers:
- Use strong passwords. Avoid using your birth date, child’s name or birth date, mother’s maiden name, the last four digits of your Social Security number, or really obvious ones like “123456” or “password.”
- Change your passwords frequently
- Use different passwords for each online account or website
- Be careful about the types of information you share online, especially if it is information that could be used to get past security questions on your accounts (things like your first car, first pet’s name, city where you were born)
- Shred outdated documents with personal information. While you should keep your tax returns forever, you should shred supporting documents for your tax returns after seven years. After one year, shred bank statements, pay stubs, and medical bills (unless you have an unresolved insurance dispute). Shred utility bills a month after they have been paid.