A user of one of the forums frequented by hackers has put up for sale a selection of data from 700 million LinkedIn users, but the Microsoft-owned service claims that it is not the result of a data breach and that the private information is safe.
The data package has been published on the RaidForums forum, including a sample consisting of one million records, in order to demonstrate the veracity of the leak. Security researchers at PrivacySharks have checked that sample, and have concluded that it is real. However, that does not mean that LinkedIn has been hacked .
LinkedIn has already responded to the publication of this data, and has clarified that there has not been a leak of private data on its platform, although the published profiles are real. This data is actually public, accessible to anyone visiting the Internet, and obtained through various sources other than LinkedIn.
Therefore, the so-called “hacker” would have actually done a compilation job, obtaining data from LinkedIn users who have posted on their social network profile, or on other sites. This technique is known as ” scrapping “, and it is carried out in an automated way with ‘bots’ that store all the information made public by social networks. Facebook is another service that has suffered from these types of tactics.
The list of data obtained in this way includes: Email, name, address, telephone number, geolocation records, LinkedIn user, profile address, professional experience, gender, and the users you have on other social networks.
Scrapping is prohibited by LinkedIn’s terms of service, but that doesn’t stop many from doing it to get valuable data from their victims. The objective is to draw interesting or useful conclusions from users, which can be used for blackmail or to obtain more related data. For example, with the filtered data, the salary of the users can be inferred , although not with complete precision.
Taking into account that last February LinkedIn announced that it had 740 million users, this publication affects the vast majority of people who have an account on the network, specialized in employment and business use.
Hacker puts LinkedIn data of 500 million users up for sale
In addition, this is not the first time that LinkedIn has suffered a similar attack, and already last April a very similar collection of data was published, but that “only” reached 500 million users.
Leon Cooper was born and raised in Vancouver. As a Reporter for YourMiningNews, Leon has contributed to several online publications including Dream House Publications and Granville Magazine. In regards to academics, Leon has got a Post Graduation Degree in Department Of Archaeology from The University Of British Columbia. As a Reporter for YourMiningNews Leon Covers International Topics.