Microsoft Suffers Data Leak: 250 Million Records Exposed

Major tech company, Microsoft has become the latest company to suffer from a data leak. In all, 250 million records have been exposed.

When you think of who the victims are in a security incident, you might think of companies not being part of the tech sector. This can include convenience stores, the medical sector, or even restaurant chains. As we’re learning recently, sometimes the big players in the tech sector get hit too. Microsoft is the latest company to suffer from a data leak. In all, 250 million records were exposed. It goes to show you that even Microsoft is far from immune to security lapses.

A security researcher uncovered the unprotected server. He then reported it to Microsoft who then secured the server. From ZDNet:

In a blog post today, the OS maker said that an internal customer support database that was storing anonymized user analytics was accidentally exposed online without proper protections between Dec.r 5 and Dec. 31.

The database was spotted and reported to Microsoft by Bob Diachenko, a security researcher with Security Discovery.

The leaky customer support database consisted of a cluster of five Elasticsearch servers, a technology used to simplify search operations, Diachenko told ZDNet today. All five servers stored the same data, appearing to be mirrors of each other.

Diachenko said Microsoft secured the exposed database on the same day he reported the issue to the OS maker, despite being New Year’s Eve.

“I have been in touch with the Microsoft team helping and supporting them to properly investigate it,” Diachenko told ZDNet.

The good news is that the records were anonymized. So, that will help things for the company. At the same time, Microsoft has been catching flack for years over their practices of collecting data from Windows 10 OS users. Some say that the company is collecting too much data then necessary and some accuse the company of using that data to help turn a profit. The fact is, some data being collected isn’t exactly voluntary either.

Now, in a situation that follows a timeline similar to what Facebook went through in the last few years, that want to collect all that data has resulted in a major leak of data. If Microsoft is hoping to win customer trust over to Windows 10, this latest incident is definitely not going to help their cause. No doubt Microsoft is hoping this latest lapse is the last one they’ll have to go through.

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Facebook.



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