WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – A computer hacker known as “mr.grey” is wanted by the FBI for stealing the login information for over 1.2 billion online accounts, reports the BBC.
The hacker was linked to the stolen logins through a Russian email address.
“To the best of our knowledge, they mostly focused on stealing credentials, eventually ending up with the largest cache of stolen personal information, totaling over 1.2 billion unique sets of e-mails and passwords,” said American cyber security firm Hold Security.
The company said the Russian crime ring responsible for stealing the data, called CyberVor, breached more than 420,000 websites.
Dave Palmer, director of technology at security firm Darktrace, said the accounts were hacked through botnets, large networks of computers linked together to perform malicious activity.
“What’s interesting about this is botnets are usually used to harness their massive scale to attack an individual target – like taking computer games consoles down last Christmas for example,” he explained. “It’s instead been used as a massive scanner scanning websites all around the world for weaknesses.”
Palmer added that by adding simple security tools to most websites, such attacks can usually be thwarted.
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