Yahoo is facing further investigation relating to its disclosure of a major data breach
Yahoo's headaches could be set for another twist after company confirmed it was facing a government inquiry.
The firm could be facing investigation from major US financial watchdogs, including several federal agencies, for not disclosing the scale of two huge data breaches.
Over a billion Yahoo user accounts were affected in the breach, which reportedly took place in 2014, but was not disclosed until last year, with around another 500 million accounts affected in a separate breach later that year.
Yahoo said at the time that analysis has led it to believe the same state-sponsored hackers were involved in the first attack, which was distinct from the later assault.
The breach could have led to the names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords, as well as security questions and answers, being accessed.
However the company assured customers that no financial information had been compromised.
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The new investigation was spotted by the Wall Street Journal, which noted that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had opened proceedings against Yahoo back in December, when it asked the company to provide documents relating to the breach.
The SEC requests that companies disclose any possible cybersecurity risks as soon as they are determined to have an effect on investors.
Yahoo confirmed back in November that it was, “cooperating with federal, state and foreign” agencies which were seeking information on the 2014 breach.
As well as the SEC, this also included the Federal Trade Commission, the U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan, and a number of State Attorneys General.
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has already said she will step down soon
It's not known what kind of penalties Yahoo could face if found guilty of misdeed, as the SEC has not to date brought a case against any company for failing to disclose a breach in the past.
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But any major penalty could affect the status of the ongoing $4.8 billion (£3.9 billion) takeover deal of the company by American telecoms firm Verizon.
However the company will also soon be losing its CEO Marissa Mayer, who said she would be stepping down from the board once the Verizon takeover is complete.