User information is not safe anywhere, it seems, as new reports of hacks and data leaks keep emerging every day. Barely 2 days after the world was left shocked by RockYou2021, the largest data breach of its kind, including over 8.4 billion unique passwords, it has been revealed that hackers have got their hands on yet another treasure chest of account login credentials.
Large Amounts of Data Leaked
This time around, the leaked file, which contains 1.2TB worth of login details, autofill data, browser cookies, and payment information, accessed through the use of an unknown malware. The database contains some 26 million unique credentials, 6.6 million files, 2.2 billion browser cookies, and 1.1 million unique mail addresses. In some cases, Notepad files which users had used to store their passwords in, were also hacked.
That is not all, though. The leaked file, which came to light on Wednesday, also contained more than 650,000 Word and PDF files, as well as 1 million images. Screenshots of the computers after they had been infected with the malware, are also included, as are data stolen from messaging, gaming, mail, and file-sharing apps. The data were stolen between 2018 to 2020, from more than 3 million personal computer systems.
Malware and other data stealing programmes are all the rage these days, with more and more hackers opting to install such programmes into the computers of naive victims. Moreover, these attacks are no longer limited to just the data of normal users, as hackers are becoming more and more confident in their skills.
Increasing Malware Attacks
Nowadays, it’s not uncommon to find data stealers attempting to introduce malware into large computer systems dealing in cryptocurrency or large amounts of data. An example which is fairly recent (in fact, it took place just last month) is the infamous Colonial Pipeline hack.
The computer systems running the largest gas pipeline in the United States recently suffered a ransomware attack by hacker group DarkSide, which eventually resulted in Colonial, the company behind the pipeline, ending up paying a hefty ransom of nearly $5 million to the criminals.
Cheap and Easy to Come By
Alon Gal, co-founder and CTO at Hudson Rock, a security firm, holds that ransomware software is extremely easy to come across, and being cheap, it is highly preferred by hackers as well. Most often, the original creators end up selling their ransomware products to other parties, which specialise in such attacks, once their own needs have been fulfilled.