Millions of usernames and passwords for email services like Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo Mail and Mail.ru are bring traded on the Russian black market according to a security expert this week. According to Alex Holden, who has played a key role in discovering huge data breaches in the past, claims that right now, the details of 273.3 million accounts are being actively traded.
This all comes from Reuters, who spoke with Holden as part of an exclusive report. According to the expert, Mail.ru has had the biggest effect, with around 57 million accounts stolen. However, large numbers of Hotmail, Gmail and Yahoo accounts are also being made available.
Image via: Faze Media
Around 40 million Yahoo Mail accounts have been compromised, 33 million Hotmail accounts and 24 million Gmail accounts. According to Holden, email accounts weren't the only targets of this particular data breach, thousands of account details for employees at US banks are also available to snag on the criminal market, along with employee details at US manufacturing and retail companies.
Apparently, Holden discovered this massive data leak when he was browsing some hacker forums, where he found a young Russian hacker asking for 50 rubles for the whole information dump. However, he managed to talk his way into getting the information for free by promising to help talk up the hacker's reputation.
KitGuru Says: That is a worrying amount of account details to be floating around. However, as far as we know, these companies have been informed and should hopefully be able to sift through the data and warn customers if their accounts have been compromised.