WhatsApp Data Leak: Private Details Of 500 Million Global Users Up For Sale, Says Report
New Delhi: The phone numbers of nearly 500 million WhatsApp users have been leaked and are up for sale. The database, up for sale on a popular hacking forum, contains the private information of WhatsApp users from 84 countries, according to a report by Cybernews. The leaked datasheet allegedly has user information from several countries across the world, such as Egypt (945 million), Italy (35 million), Saudi Arabia (29 million), France (20 million), Turkey (20 million), and the US (32 million)
According to the report, the person(s) who leaked and uploaded the data for sale wanted to sell the US dataset for $7,000, the UK dataset for $2,500, and the German dataset for $2,000.
As seen historically, such information is usually leaked by hackers for the purpose of carrying out smishing (text-based phishing) and vishing (voice call-based phishing) attacks. Bad actors usually access data through a systematic method of calling people from unknown numbers. Such hacking is also carried out by sending unsolicited messages to users’ phone numbers.
WhatsApp has over two billion active users from across the globe.
Meta has not offered a comment on the breach so far. In the past too, Meta has been at the receiving end of a lot of criticism and flak for allegedly allowing third parties to collect data.