2022-08-18

An unprecedented case of data leak has come to the fore from China. If confirmed, it could be the biggest such cybersecurity breach in history. As per claims from hackers, personal records of 1 billion (100 crore) people have been obtained from an alleged police database.

The news came to light when a massive database of 24 terabytes (24 TB) was put up for sale on a hacking forum on the internet called Breach Forums. The user with name ‘ChinaDan’ claimed to put up the records of billion people and “several billion case records” for the price of  10 Bitcoin, which would equate to around $200,000 (around Rs 1.58 crore).

It allegedly contained information like names, addresses, national identification numbers and mobile phone numbers and case details that are claimed to be extracted from the Shanghai National Police database.

Data breach includes details of minors?

The Associated Press saw sample data which included names, birthdates, ages and mobile numbers. One record listed an individual as aged 1 and born in 2020, suggestive that the data includes information on minors. The veracity of the records, however, is not verified till now.

The news soon triggered buzz on Chinese social media platforms around ‘Shanghai data leak’, but the keywords have now been blocked in a censor move, it was reported.

The news of alleged breach was also attested by cryptocurrency exchange Binance’s CEO Zhao Changpeng, who tweeted on Monday revealing that the company’s threat intelligence had detected the sale of “1 billion resident records”.

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(With inputs from PTI)

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