Heads up, LinkedIn users! Once again, the data of a majority of LinkedIn users landed at the dark web marketplace. This time, the dumped data includes 700 million records belonging to LinkedIn users, possibly including private information. Again, though, LinkedIn has clearly ruled out any possible security breach.
LinkedIn Users Data Dumped Online
A seller has recently dumped a new database of roughly 700 million records on the dark web for sale. This database, leaked on RaidForums, includes the personal and private data of LinkedIn users, approx. 92% of them.
This instance first caught the attention of PrivacySharks, who then reported the matter publicly. As they could verify from the sample data of 1 million records, the dumped data does include legit details of LinkedIn users. As stated in their post,
Our researchers have viewed the sample and can confirm that the damning records include information such as full names, gender, email addresses, phone numbers, and industry information.
However, it isn’t yet confirmed if the database includes freshly dumped records or is a collection of previous data dumps.
LinkedIn Confirmed No Security Breach On Its Platform
Upon finding the data up for sale, PrivacyShark reached out to LinkedIn officials who confirmed no security incident at LinkedIn. The tech giant confirmed in the statement that the database could have been aggregated via scraping.
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. This was not a LinkedIn data breach and our investigation has determined that no private LinkedIn member data was exposed. Scraping data from LinkedIn is a violation of our Terms of Service and we are constantly working to ensure our members’ privacy is protected.
Also, in a subsequent official update, the tech giant confirmed that the data dump included the same records scrapped earlier.
In April this year, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook made to the news for data scraping activities targeting their users. The dumped database included 500 million records of LinkedIn users, and the present incident seems an extension of it.
How To Protect Your LinkedIn Profile Data?
Since LinkedIn is all about professional networking, sharing no details on your profile or putting up false data is a clear violation of its purpose. However, you can still protect your personal data by uploading only the relevant information you’re comfortable sharing with strangers.
Ideally, keep your personal and contact details private or limited to connection only.
Also, avoid accepting connection requests from weird or misleading profiles. Before accepting any request, try to search for that individual on search engines (like Google), the company(s) mentioned on the profile, and see if you can verify the details.
Whereas, after accepting new connections, be careful during personal conversations, especially when it’s about your private life.
Let us know your thoughts in the comments.