Personal details of about 2.90 crore Indian job seekers have been found dumped on the dark net, raising concerns among cyber crime agencies and experts in India over a massive data breach.

The data leak was uncovered on Friday by Cyble, Inc, a U.S.-based cyber intelligence firm founded by global cybersecurity expert Beenu Arora.

On Saturday morning, Cyble posted an update on its official blog that the names, addresses and contact numbers belonged to job seekers from cities such as Mumbai, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Pune and Bengaluru. The data is available for free download in a 2.3-gigabyte compressed file, according to the blogpost.

Screenshots of the leaked data, which are in The Hindu’s possession, mention two well-known job portals: Naukri and Times Jobs.

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The blogpost said, “This breach includes sensitive information such as email, phone, home address, qualification, work experience, etc. Cybercriminals are always on the lookout for such personal information to conduct various nefarious activities such as identity thefts, scams, and corporate espionage.”

Mr. Arora told The Hindu that while Cyble hasn’t been able to attribute the source of the leak yet, they can say with a high degree of confidence that the leak appears to have occurred from a resume aggregator service.

Mr. Arora said, “A Russian-speaking threat actor is responsible for the leak, and it is likely that the data has been floating on the dark web for some time, unnoticed … it’s possible that the leak was made to get attention and rapport in the dark web markets. This reminds us of the same strategy recently deployed by ShinyHunters, a known cybercriminal responsible for Tokopedia, Unacademy, Wishbone, Mathway, and other leaks.”

ShinyHunters leaked details hacked from Tokopedia, Indonesia’s largest online store, for free and later sold them for millions of U.S. dollars. Spurred by their success, ShinyHunters went on to target at least 10 more servers, including Unacademy, an Indian learning platform.

Cyble, in its blogpost, said it has acquired the leaked data and job seekers can register at AmIbreached.com, its data breach monitoring and notification service, to confirm if their information is part of the data. Mr. Arora said, “Based on current analysis, the information is quite detailed and invasive, and a desirable ingredient for cybercriminals.”

Indian cyber crime investigation agencies are also trying to trace the source of the leak and find out more about the hacker, sources confirmed. Balsing Rajput, Superintendent of Police (Maharashtra Cyber), said. “Data breaches have a serious impact on users, and criminals use the leaked data to commit various cyber attacks for financial gains or other motives. We are looking into the matter. Users need to update their passwords, opt for two-factor authentication and conduct regular security checks.”

Brijesh Singh, cyber expert and Special Inspector General of Police, said people can find out if their details have been hacked by checking websites like haveibeenpwned.com, which maintain databases of breached data. Mr. Singh said, “If you find that your data has been breached, check your bank and financial statements immediately. If you find any anomaly, report to the the bank/wallet/service provider and authorities without delay.”

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