When did Quora know about the hack? LinkedIn and hiring data paint a curious picture.

1 week ago by Joshua Fruhlinger in News

The world only recently learned of a massive hack at Q&A site Quora ($QUORA). The breach has left account and user information potentially compromised for roughly 100 million people.

According to Quora, the hack was discovered on November 30. On that very same day, several Quora employees began deleting their association with the company on LinkedIn.

We track number of profiles associated with an employer on LinkedIn on a daily basis in order to understand how a company is growing or shrinking. In this case, Quora saw a small — but statistically and temporally relevant — drop beginning the day of the breach.

On December 1, 563 people had Quora listed as their employer on LinkedIn. As of yesterday, that number dropped to 559. While 4 employees removing Quora as their employer on LinkedIn isn't a big deal on its own, it does signal the first time that the company's employee count saw a drop after what appeared to be a month of steady growth.

We also track hiring activity at companies, in this case based on data pulled directly from Quora's job-listings website. Interestingly, hiring at the company slowed significantly at the time of the breach as well, dropping from 64 openings to 53 as of yesterday.

The two contractions may be inconvenient coincidences for Quora. It's still unclear when employees knew of the breach, who knew on November 30, and how the company may be triaging the news.

Joshua Fruhlinger

Joshua has been writing about technology, lifestyle, and business for over 20 years. He's one of the original writers and editors for Engadget, and still writes a...

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