Email platform, Verification.io has suffered a major data breach that has compromised around 2 billion records, reports reveal.
The intrusion, discovered by security research, Bob Diachenko, has put countless personal email addresses and names into the public domain. Working in collaboration with colleague, Vinny Troia, traced the breach back to Verification.io, an email validation service.
Business intelligence data is believed to be caught up in the compromised details, along with information on employees and revenue data from other firms.
Speaking to Digital Journal, Chief Trust Officer at Unisys, Tom Patterson, said:
“Organisations that aggregate large volumes of consumer data continue to be targets of major cyber-attacks.
“Whether attribution eventually points to trans-national criminal gangs with a profit motive, foreign intelligence services with at globally strategic motive, home-grown or insiders with an axe to grind, or terrorists building their own files, the result for the hundreds of millions of compromised persons is the same,” Mr Patterson added.
“Sectors that are in the middle of big things, including advertising, legal, accounting, shipping, and more, must no longer rely on security by their obscurity. Global adversaries know who they are, and they now have a cyber-target painted on their logo,” he continued.
CEO at nCipher Security, Cindy Provin, elaborated on the significance of the breach.
“A leak of 763 million records is massive. Not only were emails publicly accessible for anyone with an internet connection, but phone numbers, birth dates, mortgage amounts, interest rates and social media accounts were also exposed.
“This is like winning a lottery for cyber-criminals who can easily piece together the information and use it as bait for phishing attacks and identity theft to cash in on even more sensitive information,” she added.
Ms Provin also outlined how grave the situation was for business owners and consumers alike.
“A leak of this magnitude certainly validates what we heard from consumers in a recent survey about cyber-security: 68 percent of Americans fear identity theft – and for good reason. Organizations need to be vigilant in today’s cyber-economy and extend their encryption policies to cover all personally identifiable information, so that it becomes useless should it fall into the wrong hands.”
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