The number of relays have suddenly increased from 6700 range to 10000 range in a very short period of time. What is going on?
This is an ongoing attack on the Tor network. A group has established ~3000 relays (and growing), ~50% of network nodes (note, network nodes, not network capacity for which I don't have a decent measurement, but which is much smaller).
However, as all of their nodes are fairly new, and some are being blocked by the directory authorities , the probability that you'd actually get one of their nodes for a guard node and another for an exit is extremely low (guard nodes are also cached to help incase of attacks like this one).
All the media hype is just that, and there is little reason to be worried at this time. Check your circuits, and you'll be fine.
Tor is being hacked by lizard mafia, the same folks who attacked the psn and xbox networks. They currently own about 50% of all relays, over 4000, meaning they can trace you. All the relays are called "lizardnsa"