5 things you need to know in Australian tech today

@Showpo/ Instagram

Welcome to Thursday:

1. A stark warning has come for local startups to not forget security amid the excitement of building a dream product. Sydney ticket sales platform Qnect has had its customer data breached, and the hackers have been sending out SMS messages to users urging them to pressure the company into paying bitcoins to stop the information from being made public. Read more on the scandal here.

2. There’s a website where you can check if you’ve had your personal data splashed all over the internet. The ‘Have I Been Pwned’ site allows you to type in your email address or login and will tell you if bad guys have the passwords for those accounts. Australian security expert and site author Troy Hunt had just 154 million accounts on the database when the service launched in 2013, but now there are 3.75 billion. Yikes.

3. Microsoft Office 365 had an outage in Australia on Wednesday. Local users reported not being able to connect to Outlook via the web and mobile, according to CRN, with Microsoft concluding that it specifically effected customers trying to log on to outlook.com using a Firefox browser due to certificate issues.

4. Showpo is one of Australia’s startup success stories. Business Insider was fortunate enough to spend a day in the life of founder and chief executive Jane Lu to see what happens behind all those glamorous Instagram photos. Read more here.

5. Interested in buying bitcoins? Here’s a thorough guide on how to grab some of the cryptocurrency, thanks to our sister publication Lifehacker.

BONUS: Photos of Chinese tech giant Alibaba’s swish new office in Melbourne, for the entire Australia and New Zealand operations.

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