Hackers who breached T-Mobile stole personal data for ~49 million accounts
T-Mobile said on Wednesday that criminals obtained the personal information of nearly 49 million current, former and potential customers in the last mega-hack of its servers.
Transportation includes customer first and last names, date of birth, SSN, and driver’s license / ID information for 7.8 million current postpaid accounts, which means accounts that are billed at the end of each cycle billing. The unknown hackers obtained the same data from more than 40 million records belonging to former or potential customers who had previously applied for credit from T-Mobile.
The names, phone numbers and account PINs of approximately 850,000 active T-Mobile prepaid customers were also stolen. T-Mobile said “additional information” from an unspecified number of inactive prepaid accounts was also affected.
The mobile operator said none of the hacked data contained customer financial information, credit or debit cards or other payment information. With the exception of the data for the 850,000 prepaid accounts, none of the data involved included a phone number or account PIN.
T-Mobile, which is no stranger to data breaches involving millions of customers, said it has hired cybersecurity experts to help investigate the latest hack. The company said it had located and shut down the access point used by hackers to hack the servers. The carrier also coordinated with law enforcement.
In response, T-Mobile said:
- Immediate offer of 2 years of free identity protection services with McAfee Identity Theft Protection Service.
- Recommend to all postpaid T-Mobile customers to proactively change their PIN code by logging into their T-Mobile account online or by calling our customer service by dialing 611 on your phone. This precaution is taken despite the fact that we have no knowledge that postpaid account PINs have been compromised.
- Taking the extra step of protecting your mobile account with our account takeover protection capabilities for postpaid customers, making it more difficult for customer account fraudulent porting and theft.
- Single webpage posted later Wednesday for unique information and solutions to help customers take action to further protect themselves.
Rumor of the breach first surfaced over the weekend when someone using the @ und0xxed Twitter account and someone on a cybercrime forum announced the availability of millions of what they claimed to be. recordings never published before. A report from Motherboard confirmed that the data matched T-Mobile customers. Motherboard said the person selling the data claimed there were 100 million records available.
It is not known if someone purchased the data or if the data is being used to engage in identity theft or other crimes. It’s not uncommon for data stolen during breaches to end up being posted online, so it’s available to anyone who takes the time to find it.
The availability of free credit monitoring is better than nothing, but the most significant steps that those affected can take are to change account PINs and passwords and implement the option mentioned above. above consisting of configuring an access code to restrict the porting of telephone numbers to a new account. , a crime commonly known as SIM card swapping. Even with such protections, SIM swapping is still a big enough risk that people don’t associate important accounts with their phone numbers as much as possible.