A security researchers’ team claims to have found a publicly accessible database that exposes the information on over 80 million U.S. households which is nearly 65 percent of the total number of American households. The unprotected database has been discovered by VPNMentor’s research team that is lead by the hacktivists Ran Locar and Noam Rotem and includes 24 GB of extremely detailed information about the individual homes that includes their full names, addresses, ages and as well as birthdates.
The massive database that is hosted on a Microsoft cloud server also bears coded information that has been noted in numerical values which the researcher believed to correlate to homeowners’ gender, income bracket, marital status and the dwelling type. It is of great fortune that the unprotected database does not contain the passwords, payment card information and / or social security numbers related to any of the affected American households.
The researchers have verified the accuracy of some data in the cache, but the complete data was not downloaded in the bid to minimise the invasion of the privacy of the affected ones. The research team also discovered the database by chance while running a web mapping project utilizing the port scanning to examine known IP blocks in order to find the nicks in the web systems that they then examine for data leaks and weaknesses. On a usual occurrence, the researcher team alerts the owner of the leak so that the affected company could protect it. But in the current case, the researchers were unable to identify the owner of the database. The unsecured database was online till 29th of April 2019 (Monday) and did not require any password for its access. But now, the database has been taken down. It has also been suspected that the database could be owned by healthcare, insurance or mortgage company.