Forbes has an excellent rundown of each major step in the hacking of Gawker.
It’s seems there are three key lessons. Any site can be hacked. All users should use a variety of passwords as opposed to using one password across multiple sites. And if you insult a hacker, they tend to take it personally.
According to the group that took responsibility for the hacking (Gnosis), they chose their target based on some public comments (which were then bolstered by the private comments the hackers accessed).
We went after Gawker because of their outright arrogance. It took us a few hours to find a way to dump all their source code and a bit longer to find a way into their database.
We found an interesting quote in their Campfire logs:
Hamilton N.: Nick Denton Says Bring It On 4Chan, Right to My Home Address
Ryan T.: We Are Not Scared of 4chan Here at 210 Elizabeth St NY NY 10012
Your information is out there on the internet. Now you have to depend on your own strategies, the ability of every site you frequent to protect your data, and the mood of hackers.