Friday, 24 November, 2017

17 mn Zomato users' stolen data now being sold online

17 mn Zomato users' stolen data now being sold online 17 mn Zomato users' stolen data now being sold online
Frank Williams | 19 May, 2017, 12:27

The stolen information contains user email addresses and "hashed" passwords but no payment information or credit card data has been stolen/leaked, Zomato said in a blog post. A screenshot of the vendor's sale page for stolen data posted on HackRead identifies the hashing algorithm as "MD5", which experts say is "outdated" and "insecure".The research team at infySEC-a cyber security company from Chennai-tried to access user information in Zomato's database, as part of its bug bounty program. The company said it will be actively working to plug any more security gaps in its systems. 'We look forward to working more closely with the ethical hacker community to make Zomato a safer place for our users, ' it further stated. The marketplace link which was being used to sell the data on the dark web is also reportedly no longer available, as per the blog.

Since this was a hacker from an ethical group that checks for any loopholes, they shared what exactly was done to steal the data and the Zomato team has plugged that loophole to prevent any further breaches.

"No other information was exposed to anyone".

"Technically what they are saying is correct, i.e. a hashed password can not be decrypted, but what they aren't saying is - it is technically possible to break the hashing algorithm to guess the passwords". The company said in a statement, "As a precaution, we have reset the passwords for all affected users and logged them out of the app and website. His/her key request was that we run a healthy bug bounty program for security researchers", he said.

Zomato, that has over 120 million users, however said that all the payment records were safe. "This means your password can not be easily converted back to plain text".

Khawaja to lead Australia 'A' in SA tour
Meanwhile, the Australian selectors have also named the one-day squad for tri-series featuring South Africa A and India A. He could yet be in line for a leadership role with Victoria and the Melbourne Stars next summer.

The investigation into the breach is ongoing but users who use the same password across multiple websites and social media platforms are being advised to change their password as soon as possible.

Password "hashing" is an encryption technique usually used for large online user databases.

There was some panic on Thursday after Zomato put up a blog post stating that data of 17 million accounts had been stolen. Contrast this to the "surface web" that can easily found through a search engine.

This is not the first time that Zomato has been hacked. Would Zomato be liable to compensate end users for loss of sensitive data?

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