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The biggest hacking attacks of 2020

By Noir July 10, 2021, 3:46 p.m.

The number of phishing scams have increased exponentially over the past 10 years. However, 2020 saw the highest number of breaches and hacks in history. This was mainly due to the Covid-19 pandemic. According to researchers, 2020 saw over 740 million files breached and information sold on the dark web. So in this article, we will talk about some of the biggest hacking attacks of 2020. Our analysis is based on the number of files tempered with.

The biggest hacking attacks of 2020
Number 1: Estee Lauder incident
The February 2020 incident became one of the biggest data breaches in history. In a staggering breach of it's security systems, the cosmetic company had more 440 million files accessed. Of this number, an unspecified number were plain text email addresses.

The hackers involved later uploaded the unprotected database to the internet. Remember, the database had more than 440 million pieces of customer information. Some of the information is also believed to have been sold on the dark web. It's still unclear what method the hackers used to take the information.
Number 2: Wawa incident
Another major incident in 2020 was in January. The customer information obtained during the Wawa breach was sold on the dark web. More than 30 million payment cards found their way to the underground marketplace known as Joker's Bazaar.

The attackers accessed the files by installing malware onto Wawa's payment software. The attack was realized in January 2020. However, it's believed that the hackers might have accessed the system more than nine months ago. Still, there are fears that more payment cards could be at risk.
Number 3: Wishbone
The Wishbone leak was undertaken by hacking group ShinyHunters. The cybercrime operation leaked more than 40 million user records. Most of the information was sold on the dark web. RaidForum is one of the marketplaces where this information was found.

The leaked files reportedly had a lot of customer details. Some of the details included usernames, email addresses and even passwords. The password information was encrypted using the MD5 algorithm. And this is the major reason the hackers succeeded in accessing these servers. MD5 has been considered unsafe for use for a very long time. It's an outdated encryption which makes it much easier for hackers to crack those hashes.
Number 4: Pakistani Mobile Users incident
Pakistani Mobile users suffered two major blows last year. In the first incident, hackers put more than 55 million user accounts for sale on the black market. This was in April. A month later, hackers leaked another 44 million user accounts.

This became one of the major breaching incidences in the Country's history. Up till now, the country has never recovered from the attack. And the incident is also still surrounded by mystery. Recent information reveals that the system might have been tampered with more than 7 years ago.  Latest files discovered in the system have been traced back to 2013.

Some of the information which was leaked include national ID numbers, phone numbers and full names. The Pakistani Telecommunication Authority is still investigating the matter. Even though, no mobile company has come out to accept responsibility.
Number 5: T-Mobile Breaches
T-Mobile is a company not new to hacking attacks, but it's 2020 that they were hit so badly. In March, hackers gained access to the company's servers. Consequently, several user information was stolen.

Some of the information that was exposed include user names, addresses, phone numbers, and other sensitive information. The company later explained that the hackers gained access to an employee email address. It is however unknown how many people were affected.

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