Hackers have stolen the details of 6.6 million users after breaching the systems of ClixSense, a service that pays people to view ads and take online surveys.
Australian security expert Troy Hunt reported that hackers breached ClixSense earlier this month and obtained 6.6 million user records, of which they made public 2.4 million. The compromised information includes names, usernames, email addresses, passwords stored in plain text, account balances, dates of birth, payment information and IP addresses.
ClixSense has confirmed that its system have been breached. According to the company, hackers gained access to its database server after first accessing an old server that had still been connected to it. The vulnerable server has since been shut down.
“[The hacker] was able to copy most if not all of our users table, he ran some SQL code that changed the names on accounts to ‘hacked account’ and deleted many forum posts. He also set user balances to $0.00,” ClixSense told users.
“We were able to restore the user balances, forum and many account names. Some of you were asked to fill out your name again as we did not want to restore this from our backup due to the amount of time it would have taken to get back online,” the company added.
Passwords have been reset and users have been advised to change their passwords for other accounts as well if necessary.
In a Pastebin post that has since been removed, the hackers claimed they accessed 6,606,008 user records and the complete source code for the ClixSense website after breaching a server that had been protected by weak credentials.
The attackers decided to publish a data sample after ClixSense initially denied being hacked. The cybercriminals are selling the rest of the information stolen from the company’s systems.
Numerous mega-breaches have come to light over the past months. The list of impacted organizations includes QIP (33 million affected), Rambler (100 million), Mail.Ru (25 million), VK (100 million), Last.fm (43 million), Dota (2 million), LinkedIn (167 million), Myspace (360 million), VerticalScope (45 million) and Tumblr (65 million).