Twitter is being investigated by an Irish watchdog after a hacker claims to have the personal information of over 400 million users.
The hacker “Ryushi” offered to sell back the database for $200,000 and then delete it from his records.
The database allegedly has phone numbers, email addresses, and other private details of those including notable figures like celebrities and politicians.
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But the exact number of personal details contained in the plunder has not been confirmed.
Ireland’s Data Protection Commission (DPC) said it “will examine Twitter’s compliance with data-protection law in relation to that security issue”.
Only a “sample” of 1000 records has been made available to prove its validity.
It was reported that data from US Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was among the hacker’s sample of data.
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The data of broadcaster Piers Morgan, whose Twitter account was recently hacked, is also reported to be included.
Twitter CTO Alon Gal confirmed the quantity of data taken had not been substantiated and said a number of signs appeared to verify the hacker’s assertion.
He noted that the data sample given appeared to be different to that taken from a previous hack in which details from 5.4 million Twitter accounts were exposed.
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Only 60 emails from a sample of 1,000 given by the hacker in the previous incident were duplicated.
Mr. Gal said: “We are confident that this breach is different and significantly bigger.
“The hacker aims to sell the database through an escrow service that is offered on a cyber-crime forum.”
Twitter has not responded to comments about the claimed breach.
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