Monday, May 24, 2021

TPG confirms data on dark web belongs to its customer


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TPG confirms data on dark web belongs to its customer

John Davidson
John DavidsonColumnist

TPG Telecom has confirmed that data freely available to download on the dark web belongs to one of its customers, following a cyber security breach of TPG’s servers in April.

The 5 gigabyte download, available at no charge on at least one dark web site, comes from one of the customers of TPG’s TrustedCloud service, a cloud-hosting service which the company was already in the process of decommissioning when it was hacked on April 25, a TPG spokesperson told The Australian Financial Review.

Ominously, the file is called “tpg_part_1.7z” (7z is a file compression format, similar to “zip” and “rar”), suggesting a second instalment may be on the way.

screen shot of dark web

A screen shot of a dark web site, offering leaked TPG data as a free download. 

TPG refused to say whose data it was, or what type of data was exposed in the file, but a spokesperson confirmed that the file contained the entire contents of a cloud-based server one customer was renting from TPG, meaning it could possibly include passwords and financial records.

At 2pm on Monday, the zipped file appeared to have been downloaded 31 times from one dark web site, though it is unclear whether the site’s download counter includes only completed downloads, or all attempted downloads. Downloads of large files from the dark web often take several hours to complete, and often fail.

As part of a rationalisation of all the technology coming from the two merged companies, TrustedCloud was scheduled to be decommissioned in August, and all but a dozen customers had already been moved off the service, the TPG spokesperson said.

That decommissioning was now being “escalated”, the spokesperson said.


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