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24 Jan, 2024 | Wednesday
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'Mother of All Data Breaches' leaks 26 billion records from Linked, X, Snap

Researchers said that the majority of the data in the stolen dataset is from data breaches, it most likely contains previously unpublished new material as well, which is concerning. 

Edited By: Pranav Sawant

Published: Jan 24, 2024, 11:12 PM IST

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data-leak

Over 26 billion data records have been leaked online from popular apps from LinkedIn, X (formerly Twitter), Weibo, Snapchat, Tencent, and others, as reported by Cybersecurity researchers at Cybernews.

The researchers referred to this massive data leak as the ‘Mother of All Breaches’ (MOAB), naming it to be one of the biggest data leaks found to date. Reportedly, the data is sized whopping 12-terabytes.

Researchers said that the majority of the data in the stolen dataset is from data breaches, it most likely contains previously unpublished new material as well, which is concerning.

The leaked data not only includes login credentials but more than that. And, the information is sensitive and valuable for bad actors, as per the report.

Mother of All Breaches includes 3,800 folders which hold 26 billion records. Each folder has different information.

“The dataset is extremely dangerous as threat actors could leverage the aggregated data for a wide range of attacks, including identity theft, sophisticated phishing schemes, targeted cyberattacks, and unauthorized access to personal and sensitive accounts,” the researchers said.

Now, coming to the platforms, Tencent QQ, a Chinese instant messaging app has the most records – 1.4 billion. Next comes another Chinese platform Weibo (504 million records), followed by MySpace (360 million), Twitter (281 million), Deezer (258 million), Linkedin (251 million), AdultFriendFinder (220 million), Adobe (153 million), Canva (143 million), VK (101 million), Daily Motion (86 million), Dropbox (69 million), Telegram (41 million), and others.

“We are working to fully investigate these claims and we have seen no evidence that LinkedIn’s systems were breached,” stated LinkedIn in a statement.

What’s worrying is that the data records are not just limited to apps from private organizations, but rather, but also reach government organizations.

The leak includes records of various government organizations in the US, Germany Brazil, Turkey, Philippines, and other countries.

“If users use the same passwords for their Netflix account as they do for their Gmail account, attackers can use this to pivot towards other, more sensitive accounts. Apart from that, users whose data has been included in supermassive MOAB may become victims of spear-phishing attacks or receive high levels of spam emails,” the researchers stated.

Users can check if their email addresses or phone numbers have been leaked through platforms like Personal Data Leak Check and ‘Have I been pwned?’. If your personal details have been leaked in a data breach, wait no time and change passwords on all platforms. Try to keep different passwords for different websites. You can also enable Two-factor authentication to be on the safer side.

Written with inputs from IANS

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Author Name | Pranav Sawant

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