It’s being referred to as the “Mother of all Breaches” (MOAB). On Monday 22nd January, researchers found a database containing 26 billion leaked data records. The owner is believed to be a malicious actor or data broker, but their identity remains unknown.
Why You Should Care
While much of the data is compiled from previous data leaks and breaches, the sheer volume of sensitive data is a great cause for concern, with threat actors potentially able to use the database for a wide range of cybercriminal activities. In the researchers’ words:
“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.”
Who Has Been Affected?
Many companies and organizations have been affected. Some big names include:
- Tencent QQ (1.4B)
- Weibo (504M)
- MySpace (360M)
- X/Twitter (281M)
- Deezer (258M)
- LinkedIn (251M)
- Adobe (153M)
- Canva (143M)
- Dropbox (69M)
In addition, government organizations in the US, Brazil, Germany, Philippines, and Turkey, have been affected in the leaks. A data leak on this scale has never before been seen — it completely dwarfs all others in recent years. The consequences will no doubt come to light over the following months. In the meantime, be sure to remain vigilant and protected.
4 Steps to Protect Yourself Now
Change your passwords for the impacted sites. You should change your passwords frequently for all accounts. Make sure your passwords are strong and not easily discovered. Trend Micro ID Protection can help you create strong passwords and offers a password manager as part of the service.
Turn on multi-factor or two-factor authentication for those accounts if you haven’t done it already. Not sure how to get started? Here are some tips.
See if your data has already been leaked. Trend Micro offers a free service to check if your personal information is circulating on the dark web. Give it a go here!
Stay alert. When big data breaches occur, it usually coincides with increased cybercriminal activity. Be on the lookout for an increase in phishing attacks. When in doubt, don’t click links or reply!
Protecting Your Identity and Personal Info
Compromised personal data can have serious consequences, including identity theft, financial fraud, and job losses. The best thing you can do is a) have reliable cybersecurity protection, and b) ensure you will find out ASAP in the event of being affected. We would encourage readers to head over to ID Protection, which has been designed to meet these challenges.
With ID Protection, you can:
- Check to see if your data (email, number, password, credit card) has been exposed in a leak, or is up for grabs on the dark web;
- Secure your social media accounts with our Social Media Account Monitoring tool, with which you’ll receive a personalized report;
- Create the strongest tough-to-hack password suggestions from our advanced AI (they’ll be safely stored in your Vault);
- Enjoy a safer browsing experience, as Trend Micro checks websites and prevents trackers.
Offering both free and paid services, ID Protection will ensure you have the best safeguards in place, with 24/7 support available to you through one of the world’s leading cybersecurity companies. Trend Micro is trusted by 8 of the top 10 Fortune 500 Companies — and we’ll have your back, too.
Why not give it a go today? As always, we hope this article has been an interesting and/or useful read. If so, please do SHARE it with family and friends to help keep the online community secure and informed — and consider leaving a like or comment below. Here’s to a secure 2024!