Following an attack on LinkedIn which resulted in the loss of about 6.5 million accounts to hackers. The event which occurred in 2012, resulted in the public sale of email and password combinations of these 6.5 million social media users. Despite the catastrophic incidence, public relation staff and managers of the social media platform hesitated to apologize to their users.
Just this week, LinkedIn has confirmed a serious large scale hack estimated of about 165 million accounts details and is calling on all its users and clients to reset their password or account details as soon as possible. More pressing, over 100 million of the stolen accounts are being published for sale via the internet. With about £1,500, you can purchase one of these hacked accounts for your personal use.
According to a research carried out by the LinkedIn investigators, bad guys (fraudsters) purchase the stolen account details from a Russian based trader. Purchasing the account details grants you access to the victim’s LinkedIn account and all related accounts on other social media platforms and websites. Another basic resulting factor following the breach, is the discovery of commonly used passwords. Surprisingly, some basic keyboard combination – such as ‘123456’ represented about 0.5%, while ‘111111’, ‘qwerty’ and ‘linkedin’ were found to be some of the most used passwords out of the hacked accounts.
What is causing fear now, is the possibility of fraudsters and traders to have access to victim’s personal details and other documents which could bring about identity theft and other criminal activities. Access to bank details, job contracts, tenancy agreements, health reports and other sensitive information really jeopardizes the security of the victims of these online hack.
by Amponsem Joshua
Amponsem Joshua, is a young scientist and youth activist with interest in environment, renewable energy, economic development, and entrepreneurship. He is a blogger, lover of social media and technology. He has over 4 years’ experience in blogging and two years’ experience in writing – listed as columnist in some reputable news platform in Ghana.
Joshua volunteers as a project leader for Africa at Youth Climate Report. He produce, direct and conduct climate interviews with responsible stakeholders in Africa. His research interest revolves around climate change, sustainable development and food security as he sees these subject areas to be one of the most critical to nature.