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Massive data breach; 500 million WhatsApp numbers up for sale

Massive data breach; 500 million WhatsApp numbers up for sale

San Francisco: In a massive data breach, the WhatsApp phone numbers of around 500 million users worldwide, have been put on sale on a "well-known" hacking community forum, according to reports.

A data containing phone numbers of users from 84 countries in which, 32 million users from the US, 11 million from the UK, and 10 million from Russia are up online for sale.

The hacker claim to have a significant number of phone numbers belonging to the citizens of Egypt (45 million), Italy (35 million), Saudi Arabia (29 million), France (20 million), and Turkey (20 million).

They are to sell the US dataset for $7,000, the UK for $2,500, and Germany for $2,000.

Cybernews researchers were able to get in touch with the hackers and also able to collect a sample of the data in which they found out that the shared sample contained 1,097 UK and 817 US user numbers.

Upon investigation, the researchers found that all of them were active WhatsApp users.

However, the hacker did not specify how they obtained the data, suggesting they "used their strategy," and that all the numbers belong to WhatsApp users, said the report.

This database can be used by hackers for spamming, phishing attempts, identity theft, and other cybercrimes.

The data leak happened amid the app providing numerous privacy settings, such as hiding status and profile pictures that users can enable to protect themselves from prying eyes.

-IANS Inputs

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TAGS:WhatsApp Data leak Hacking 
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