Mar 24, 2015 · 1 minute

Twitch, the company Amazon acquired for nearly $1 billion last August, has been hacked.

The service is used mostly to live-stream content from video games, whether that involves an official tournament or a chaotic game of Pokémon Red, but it recently announced plans to stream other types of content, like live music festivals.

The company hasn't yet revealed how many people were affected by the hack. All of its users will have to create a new password as a precaution, and Twitch says it's severed the connections between its accounts, YouTube, and Twitter.

Twitch has advised its users to change their passwords on other sites. This is a common warning whenever a website is hacked; even though most people have been told not to repeat passwords across multiple websites, many do it anyway.

This creates a domino effect of potential catastrophes. Using the same password for everything, or simply using different permutations of a base password, is a kind gesture to the people who want to steal personal data. When one website goes down, every site with a similar password goes down.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Twitch has warned users their email addresses, user names, home addresses, phone numbers, and dates of birth might also have been compromised. The company has said it will reach out to users who might have been affected by this breach on an individual basis.

[illustration by Brad Jonas]