Disney has launched its streaming service in Australia today, as news emerged that some user accounts had been hacked. Picture: AP Photo/Steven Senne
Disney has launched its streaming service in Australia today, as news emerged that some user accounts had been hacked. Picture: AP Photo/Steven Senne

Disney+ accounts hacked as private data sold

AUSTRALIA'S newest streaming service is under a cloud on launch day after passwords for thousands of Disney+ accounts were harvested and offered for sale online, putting users' financial details at risk.

The service, which has been tipped as a major rival for Netflix and Stan, launched in Australia early today and promises content from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic.

But many US users have reported being locked out of their accounts and having their passwords changed, and a new report from ZDNet found the Disney+ accounts available on the Dark Web.

The cast of The Mandalorian, a Star Wars series that will appear on Disney+. Picture: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney
The cast of The Mandalorian, a Star Wars series that will appear on Disney+. Picture: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

Disney+ account details were being sold for between $US3 and $US11 in hacking forums - more than the actual price of subscribing to the service.

Other active accounts were being offered on the Dark Web free of charge.

Bitdefender threat research director Bogdan Botezatu said the Disney+ hack wad due, in part, to users signing up with old passwords that had been compromised on other accounts.

But he said it was "not entirely the users' fault" as the service lacked robust security.

"The Disney+ account doesn't provide enhanced protection such as multi-factor authentication, which is designed specifically for this scenario, showing once more just how vital an extra security step really is," he said.

"The issue starts in our living rooms and is then compounded by inadequate protection from the platform's end."

Mr Botezatu said new Disney+ users should ensure they signed up using a new, complex password "using caps, numbers, and symbols".

Disney+ launched in Australia this morning after a lot of Disney shows were removed from rival service Stan late yesterday.

The new service, which costs $8.99 a month and comes with a seven-day trial, features the first live-action Star Wars series, The Mandalorian, a TV series based on High School Musical, and Marvel's Hero Project.

Disney+ will compete in an increasingly crowded Australian streaming market, alongside newly launched Apple TV+, as well as Netflix, Foxtel Now, Stan, Kayo, Kayu, and YouTube Premium.

Disney has been contacted for comment.



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