Millions Of Instagram Users May Have Had Their Info Stolen

03 September, 2017, 07:22 | Author: Darrell Baldwin
  • A screen displays the Instagram logo during a presentation in New York

A group of hackers used a bug earlier this week to scrape the phone numbers and email addresses of six million Instagram accounts and are now selling that information on the web.

This seems to be the same bug that led to the compromise of Selena Gomez's account which was used to post nudes of her ex-boyfriend and pop star Justin Bieber.

The hackers mainly targeted celebrities and verified users, including Selena Gomez, who's account was hacked two days ago. "We fixed the bug swiftly and are running a thorough investigation", Instagram said in an email sent to verified users.

Nevertheless, contact info for hundreds of celebrities is now for sale on the darknet via a searchable database, at $10 per query, researchers from security company RepKnight discovered.

Some listings have only email addresses, without phone numbers.

The correspondence also reminded the high-profile users to activate their two-factor authentication and to use unique passwords to tighten the security of their #Instagram accounts.




"Although we can not determine which specific accounts may have been impacted, we believe it was a low percentage of Instagram accounts", a spokesperson told Mashable.

A person claiming to be the hacker told Ars Technica that, at one point, they were able to steal data at roughly 1 million accounts per hour.

He noted that no passwords or other Instagram activity were revealed.

The Doxagram site has since been taken down. However, the list doesn't stop there since it also contains the private information of these following musicians and top athletes: Harry Styles, Floyd Mayweather, Beyonce, Rihanna, Taylor Swift, Neymar, David Beckham and so on.

Instagram is now working with law enforcement, and it encourages users to "be vigilant" about possible suspicious calls, texts or emails. "We are very sorry this happened", Krieger wrote. Anyone wishing to acquire an Instagram user's personal data only has to pay $10. Kaspersky said hackers looking to exploit the flaw would have had to do it manually, as Instagram's protection prevented automated scraping.

It was clear to the team at Instagram that the hackers were targeting high-profile accounts on goal that is why they made it clear that their main concern now, is the safety of their community.

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