April 22, 2021

Why are my passwords constantly showing up in data breaches lately? (my password manager keeps alerting me)

I’m truly sorry if this question isn’t appropriate for the sub – I don’t even know where to begin to ask and would appreciate any signposting…


In the last 6 months, I’ve gotten warnings from my browser’s password manager that my passwords (en masse) have been found in security breaches. 6-ish months ago I actually took a day off work and just manically started changing literally hundreds of them. I was shocked – my Amazon account password, social media, third party payment providers, my student loan account and many more. Some of it was absolutely my own stupid fault – like using the same password on multiple accounts (but that had been ongoing for years, not sure why all of a sudden, 6 months ago they ALL were found in a data breach?); but some were not that obvious. Since then, it’s endless – “Compromised password – XYZ account: found in data breach”

Is this a case of it’s been going on for ages and I’ve just not been aware of it, or something else? It just seems really odd.



If you re-used a password across all of those accounts, it only needs to be in one breach to trigger a warning on every account. The “all of a sudden” could reflect either a breach containing that re-used password or a change in the way your password manager reports password breaches.

If it’s a password that someone else could have come up with, *their* account could have been in a breach and you would get warnings (think [email protected]$$w0rd).

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