Thousands of user names and passwords for customers of one of the largest internet service providers in the US has been discovered on a document-sharing website.
A Comcast customer came across the list on the Scribd site when he used a search engine to check what information he could find linked to his e-mail address.
Comcast spokeswoman Jennifer Khoury told The New York Times that the list looked like it was compiled from a phishing scheme or related type of attack and did not come from inside Comcast.
In January, all users of jobs websites Monster.com and USAJobs.gov were urged to change their passwords after hackers compromised log-in details. However, Comcast said there was no reason to believe its systems had been compromised.
The New York Times reported statistics on Scribd showed the list was uploaded two months ago, had been viewed more than 345 times and downloaded 27 times.
The ISP is freezing the e-mail accounts of customers who appeared on the list. It is contacting them with information on using safe passwords, Jennifer Khoury said.
The list contained about 8,000 entries, but Comcast has said about half the entries were duplicates and of those only around 700 were real.
Comcast said the list had been removed from the document sharing site. The authorities had been informed and it would co-operate with any investigation, said the company.