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Data Of 700 Million LinkedIn Users Is For Sale On The Dark Web

Who would pay for this information, you wonder? Spammers, phishers, and other cybercriminals are definitely the target audience here.

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data of 700 million linkedin users is on sale for $5000 on the dark web

The security team at LinkedIn doesn’t get much rest lately. In April, 500 million of its user’s data was exposed by hackers, and the same data collection technique was apparently used by a dark web user called TomLiner, who is currently selling 700 million LinkedIn user records (92% of all LinkedIn users) in a convenient bundle for just $5,000.

The data collection technique in question is called scraping, which is the act of extracting useful information from a website. Since any public website can be scraped using readily available tools, it wouldn’t be correct to call this incident a breach, as LinkedIn quickly pointed out.

“While we’re still investigating this issue, our initial analysis indicates that the dataset includes information scraped from LinkedIn as well as information obtained from other sources,” said Leonna Spilman, Corporate Communications Manager at LinkedIn. “This was not a LinkedIn data breach, and our investigation has determined that no private LinkedIn member data was exposed.”

So, what data has been exposed? Fortunately, no passwords or dates of birth. Here’s what a sample of one million records published by the scrapper contains:

  • Email addresses
  • Full names
  • Phone numbers
  • Physical addresses
  • Geolocation records
  • LinkedIn username and profile URL
  • Personal and professional experience/background
  • Genders
  • Other social media accounts and usernames

Who would pay $5,000 for this information, you wonder? Spammers, phishers, and other cybercriminals are definitely the target audience here.

Also Read: Is Your Phone Hacked? How To Find Out & Protect Yourself

Having all this information in one place makes it much easier for them to create detailed profiles of their potential victims and launch sophisticated targeted attacks against them. Sure, they could simply scape it by themselves using LinkedIn’s own API (application program interface) just like the seller did, but cybercrime can be so profitable that their time is often more valuable.

If you have a LinkedIn account, then you should assume that your personal information is included in the dataset and act accordingly. More specifically, you should enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) and avoid replying to email messages from unknown senders, let alone opening any attachments they may contain.

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Facebook Will Create 10,000 Jobs In The EU To Build Its Metaverse

Facebook decided to invest in the EU because the company believes that European talent is world-leading, supported by first-class universities.

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Facebook has announced that it wants to create 10,000 jobs in the European Union (EU) to build its metaverse, a virtual reality space in which users can interact with a computer-generated environment and other users.

The concept of the metaverse can be traced to Neal Stephenson’s 1992 cyberpunk novel Snow Crash. In the novel, the metaverse is a virtual shared space that appears to its users as an urban environment. This space is accessed through personal terminals connected to virtual reality goggles.

Sound familiar? That’s because the metaverse is quickly becoming a reality thanks to companies like Oculus, a subsidiary of Facebook, and the combined effort of developers and content creators from around the world.

By creating thousands of new high-skilled jobs within the EU over the next five years, Facebook wants to accelerate the development of the metaverse to usher in a new phase of interconnected virtual experiences, enabled by technologies like virtual and augmented reality.

“At its heart is the idea that by creating a greater sense of ‘virtual presence,’ interacting online can become much closer to the experience of interacting in person,” said Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice-president of global affairs. “The metaverse has the potential to help unlock access to new creative, social and economic opportunities”.

According to the official announcement, Facebook decided to invest in the EU because the company believes that European talent is world-leading, supported by first-class universities. Facebook also mentioned the role European policymakers are playing in shaping the internet, so it’s likely that the investment has a political dimension to it.

Also Read: How To Lock Your Facebook Profile (From Mobile & Desktop)

Aware of its tarnished reputation, the social media giant stressed that no single company would own and operate the metaverse — just like no single company owns the internet today. Of course, that doesn’t change anything about the fact that Facebook wants to play a huge role in it.

Earlier this year, Mark Zuckerberg told his employees that Facebook is becoming a metaverse company with the goal of building a set of connected social apps and supporting hardware. The recently released Horizon Workrooms remote collaboration app for the Oculus Quest 2 headset can be seen as an early piece of the much larger puzzle the metaverse will become in the future.

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