Uber admits to covering up cyberattack that affected 57 million users

Nov 23, 2017, 00:31
Uber admits to covering up cyberattack that affected 57 million users

The attackers were reportedly able to access a private area of the web-based GitHub version control repository for developers, where they found Uber's log-in credentials to Amazon Web Services (AWS), where the company stored the breached data.

Tech Crunch also added that Uber could face problems in their home state of California for the attempted data breach cover up.

The stolen information included names, addresses, phone numbers, and emails of 50 million people around the world who have used the service. "This data is nearly never monitored or secured, and as we can see here, it is often stored in various locations and is often easily accessed by nefarious actors", says Terry Ray, CTO of data protection company Imperva.

As the United Kingdom data protection regulator has opened an investigation into the hack of customer and driver data at Uber, the maximum penalty could be about £500,000 ($662,350, €563,000) under current British law for organizations that fail to notify affected users and regulators when data breaches occur.

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Other information, including trip location history, credit card numbers, bank account numbers, Social Security numbers or dates of birth were not obtained, according to forensic experts working with Uber.

According to a company statement, Uber is offering free credit monitoring protection for its drivers, but not affected customers.

It's also the latest major breach involving a prominent company that didn't notify the people that could be potentially harmed for months or even years after the break-in occurred.

Vera Jourova, the European Union commissioner in charge of data, said Uber's failure to come clean about the breach showed why the new data protection law was needed.

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"None of this should have happened, and I will not make excuses for it", Dara Khosrowshahi, who joined Uber as CEO in September, wrote in a blog post addressing the data breach. To further hide the damage, Uber executives also made it appear as if the payout had been part of a "bug bounty" - a common practice among technology companies in which they pay hackers to attack their software to test for soft spots.

You read that right, Uber got hacked and your personal information with it. The New York attorney general has opened an investigation into the data breach, a spokeswoman said. "While I can't erase the past, I can commit on behalf of every Uber employee that we will learn from our mistakes".

Uber's silence about its breach came while it was negotiating with the Federal Trade Commission about its handling of its riders' information.

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