Research

Contact information of millions of users leaked — Instagram hack

Contact information of millions of users leaked — Instagram hack

The timing of the Instagram hack is a potential financial disaster for Facebook, because it comes less than a month after the one-year-old "Instagram Stories" vaulted to 250 million users, versus Snapchat's 166 million users, according to TechCrunch.

So, in summation, it is a small percentage of users, but it is still a lot of personal information. While the authenticity of the database has not yet been confirmed, all signs seem to show its credible, according to Ars Technica, which collaborated with a respected security researcher. Anything out of the ordinary such as calls from unknown phone numbers and emails from unknown addresses should be reported. This is because SIM cards are usually linked to phone numbers. The data clearly isn't thrown together.

Until now, it had been believed that only "high-profile" verified accounts like Selena's had been affected, but it turns out that the breach extended even further. Instagram has to locate where they actually are and what information they could use while using the Instagram. Not that this would be of any help against a leaked phone number, of course.

Some of the users in the database had millions of followers. "My conclusion: There's nothing in here to disprove the data", Hunt said. "It's *possible* it has been scraped together from other sources, but every indication is that it's legitimate and the vector you wrote about earlier is absolutely feasible and certainly not unprecedented".

The company also asked users to follow steps to protect their information on the platform and said that it is "working with law enforcement on that matter". He said he learned of the vulnerability in an IRC discussion.

The one person who suffered the most from this bug exploit is Selena Gomez.

"Our main concern is for the safety and security of our community", the spokesperson told Silicon UK.

Instagram had to pay a big price for a bug in its API.

The group is offering contact data on stars like Miley Cyrus, Beyonce, Leonardo DiCaprio, Emma Watson and boxer Floyd Mayweather. "This is why it is critical for users to take responsibility of their own security".

"To be on the safe side, rich and famous Instagram users should probably change their login credentials anyway, remembering to make their passwords complex and unique to each online account they have".


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