Researchers at Privacy Affairs confirmed that the leaked data was from the same December breach and contained no phone numbers. The data set was originally 63GB, but after removing duplicates and compressing the files, it was reduced to 4GB and made available for free download.
The hacker had previously demanded $200,000 from Twitter in exchange for the stolen data and warned that if their demands were not met, the data would be released for free. The hacker also noted that the analysis of the original file dates and account creation dates "strongly suggest" that the data was collected between November 2021 and December 2021.
This data breach has caused concern among Twitter users, who have called on the platform to improve security measures. The vulnerability that led to the breach has since been patched, but it is believed that the same vulnerability was exploited in a separate hack in July 2022.
Popular figures and entities affected by the data breach include Sundar Pichai, Donald Trump Jr., SpaceX, CBS Media, the NBA, and the WHO.
Protecting Yourself from Data Breaches: Tips and Best Practices
Data breaches can be devastating for the individuals affected and the companies that experience them. If you want to protect yourself from falling victim to a data breach, there are several steps you can take:
Use strong and unique passwords: One of the most effective ways to protect yourself from a data breach is by using strong, unique passwords for each of your online accounts. Avoid using the same password for multiple accounts, and consider using a password manager to generate and store strong passwords for you.
Enable two-factor authentication: Two-factor authentication (2FA) is an additional security layer requiring you to enter a code sent to your phone or email and your password when logging in to your account. Enabling 2FA can protect you from unauthorized access even if your password is compromised.
Be cautious when clicking on links: Phishing attacks, in which hackers send fake emails or texts asking you to click on a link, are one of the most common ways hackers gain access to people's accounts. Be careful about which links you click on, and always verify the authenticity of any email or text message before responding.
Keep your software and devices up to date: It's important to keep them updated with the latest security patches and updates. These updates often include fixes for vulnerabilities that hackers could exploit, so it's important to stay current to stay safe.
Use a VPN: A virtual private network (VPN) can help protect your online activity by encrypting your internet connection and hiding your IP address. This can be particularly useful when accessing public Wi-Fi networks, which can be vulnerable to hackers.