Epik data breach | Avast


Has a small domain registrar (a company that handles the reservation of domain names and the assignment of IP addresses for those domain names) called Epik confirmed reports that it was hacked. What is particularly noteworthy about this data breach is that it was originally published by the hackers themselves, a group of self-proclaimed hacktivists known as “Anonymous”.

They’ve targeted Epik because of their clientele, which include Parler, 8chan, and Texas Right to Life’s abortion whistleblower website. The first two companies are best known for allowing far right groups to use their platforms, and the latter is part of the controversial. newly founded Texas Heartbeat Act, which limits access to abortion. Regardless of where you end up on the political spectrum, it should be worrying that groups of individuals are targeted by hackers for their political beliefs.

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Epik data breach affects 15 million users
Parler data scraped and archived by online activists

Political opinions fall under the umbrella of the special categories of personal data within the GDPR of the European Union. That’s because that kind of data goes along with things like Racial or ethnic origin, religious or ideological beliefs or trade union membership have been used throughout history to discriminate against people. European countries, given their potential for discrimination and serious harm, have taken special steps to further protect this type of data. Article 9 of the GDPR In fact, it prohibits companies from collecting or using this type of data unless one of a number of very specific conditions is met This is aside from that to the obligation according to Art. 6 GDPR to have a “legal basis” for every data processing. The aforementioned breach took place in the US, so the GDPR does not apply, but it shows why you should be concerned about this type of hacking activity when it could contain sensitive data that would have been protected as special category data in Europe.

Given the prevalence of hacking, it is very worrying to see that a group of hackers is targeting an organization and its members based on their political beliefs, as the potential harm that could be done to all people is significant. Just imagine that there is an issue where your opinion does not agree with a group of anonymous people that you have become a potential target for them. They could disclose your personal information online, including sensitive or special category information, exposing you to the risk of fraud and your physical safety if your location or place of residence is included in the information disclosed.

As a consumer, you cannot always rely on companies or government organizations to prevent cyberattacks. You can do this by, for example, deleting old, unused accounts and checking out as a guest instead of creating an account while shopping online. You should also never use the same password for multiple accounts and always use a strong password and multi-factor authentication when available.

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