The Biggest Security Breaches of the Century and How They Affected Our Daily Life
Many companies learned to their cost that it’s not a good idea to cut corners on the security department. With thousands of employees and millions of customers files to hold up, the big corporations represent the main target for hackers worldwide. However, hacker’s voracious appetite knows no boundaries, every now and then they would crack down on political structures and even governments. Notwithstanding the fierce persecution around the globe, hacker organizations have been interfering actively with the private sector as well as the international affairs in the past decade.
The Bigger They Are the Harder They Fall
Having the scalps of reputable companies is not only a means of stroking hacker’s ego but a very profitable trade too. Some individuals seek after their claim of fame, while larger hacker communities are getting paid to undermine someone’s reputation or obtain valuable information. Let’s take a serious look at some of the major security breaches pull off in the past few years.
Sony Pictures Entertainment Stunned by North Korean Hackers
The hacker group going under the name “Guardians of Peace” (GOP) claimed to had leveraged access to Sony Pictures Entertainment database for one year straight between 2013 and 2014. The organization has allegedly managed to scoop up over 100 terabytes worth of data from Sony. The affair escalated in November 2014 after the release of Sony’s controversial comedy The Interview. GOP requested that the movie should not receive any publicity and threatened to launch attacks on cinemas that promote it. Sony bounced back and chose to commence DVD the digital media release. Meanwhile GOP disclosed tons of the company’s inmost data, featuring employees’ personal info, contract details, salaries, unreleased films, future projects and wiped out the majority of their core system structure.
Adult Friend Finder-Secrets That Are Better Left Behind Closed Doors
Adult Friend Finder set of hook-up websites has suffered significant casualties in the hands of a Thai hacker seeking revenge. The perpetrator sank their teeth into this devious venture with the intent to avenge a friend, whom the company owed money to. As a result, 20 years worth of data has been compromised, including names, IP address, email, country, birth dates etc. This caused mass distress among the customers, many of whom were public figures or happily married at that point in time. The aftermath reveals cases of divorce, severe depression, lost careers and unconfirmed suicide attempts. The Thai hacker posted more than 3 million records in the Adult Friend Finder’s forum leaving the victims at the hands of the forum members. The sensible data became the prerequisite for spam and extortion campaigns, blackmailing, you name it. The incident snowballed quickly and hit the headlines shortly after the attack. Adult Friend Finder executive went as far as to hire cyber security firm Fire Eye to probe deeply into the case and bring the offender to justice.
One Way or Another Yahoo Is Making History
In the late September of 2016, a cyber attack stormed the former number one Internet giant Yahoo, days before they close on a groundbreaking deal with Verizon. It’s said that in the waking of the horrible accident the company’s evaluation bottomed out to “just” $4.48. In speaking with the company’s officials, they revealed, that reportedly the real names, email addresses, dates of birth and telephone numbers of over 500 million users leaked out. As a fact of life, the leading Internet companies are prone to hacker attacks, but Yahoo had its fair share of them. Collectively, all breaches throughout the years chipped off the heartbreaking $350 million off Yahoo’s core business valuation.
Australian Internet Censorship Exposed
As a response to the controversial decision of the Australian regime to erect the “great firewall of Australia”, and effectively filter the hosted within the country and incoming web content, Wikileaks disclosed the proposed blacklist. They did that complacently in the face of Bjorn Landfeldt’s warnings, and the eye-popping revelation left the public with mixed feelings. Much to everyone’s surprise, the list of prohibited sites included Wikipedia, YouTube videos, and some seemingly mundane content. All in all, the better half of the blacklisted sites had nothing to do with child pornography, drugs or conspiracy or any outlaw activity.
Ebay’s Security Breach
In the month of May 2014, hackers managed to lay hands on employee account credentials, which led the eBay executives to believe that customer data may have been compromised too. Meaning that the security breach could have affected more than 145 million customers. The incident was followed by a public announcement by the company, advising its customers to change their passwords. eBay claims that customer passwords were encrypted, although they refuse to elaborate further on this sensible matter. Many skeptics, however, took this announcement with a grain of salt, as they suspected misconception of terms. How the credential theft was carried out is anyone’s guess, eBay suspect that a Phishing scheme was involved. For fear of subsequent phishing attacks, the e-commerce corporation sent millions of email notifications to their users with password reset links. AppRiver reported that phishing emails number skyrocketed in the 24-hour interval after the attack. For the most part, the perpetrators were targeting PayPal accounts, hoping that the breaking news will cause mass havoc and therefore people will take irrational decisions. The incident was tough one to lay to rest, news and speculations have since spread and kept on circulating the web for months.
Lesson to be Learnt
Whenever a renowned corporation or e-commerce suffers a cyber attack, decidedly the employees and average consumer pay the price. When you choose whom to confide in with your personal information, pick organizations with consistent and well-received policies. At least, this should take the hate attacks down for the count, and your data will stand better chances at remaining confidential. Other than that, we can’t do much to prevent next major breach.