LinkedIn Data Breach 2021 Exposes 700 Million Users: 3 Tips to Protect Yourself From Identity Theft

LinkedIn Data Breach 2021 Exposes 700 Million Users: 3 Tips to Protect Yourself From Identity Theft
A massive data breach in LinkedIn reportedly leaked 700 million user information, reportedly found on sale on the dark web for hackers and identity thieves. The information sold includes phone numbers, physical addresses, geological location, and earned salaries. Here are some steps you can take to improve your account security. Photo : inlytics | LinkedIn Analytics Tool/Unsplash

A massive data breach in LinkedIn reportedly leaked 700 million user information, reportedly found on sale on the dark web for hackers and identity thieves. The information sold includes phone numbers, physical addresses, geological location, and earned salaries. Here are some steps you can take to improve your account security.

Unfortunately, 9To5Mac reported that LinkedIn fell victim to an attack and exposed 92 percent of its users' personal information. This is a second breach, separate from the 500 million data breach reported a few months ago. LinkedIn does not confirm if the new number, totaling 756 million affected users, includes the same victims from the first breach.

LinkedIn Data Breach 2021 Exposes 700 Million Users

Restore Privacy reported on the details of the attack. It said that the data found on sale on the dark web includes user information such as:

  • Email Addresses
  • Full names
  • Phone numbers
  • Physical addresses
  • Geolocation records
  • LinkedIn username and profile URL
  • Personal and professional experience/background
  • Genders
  • Other social media accounts and usernames

Upon further analysis, the data leaked appears to be authentic and tied to real LinkedIn users. Data remains up-to-date, with samples from 2020 and 2021.

The data on 756 million LinkedIn users continue to remain on sale.

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How to Protect Yourself From Identity Theft

Since LinkedIn was already attacked twice, it would be better for you to take new security measures to protect your account and identity. Tom's Guide provided a few useful suggestions

Generally, the best option is to avoid posting personal information in your LinkedIn account. Only provide the minimum amount necessary to run an account. Also, do not link it to any of your personal social media accounts and use it purely for work-related websites.

Also, for mobile, check on the App's permissions. LinkedIn has a system that accurately pins your home location by using your GPS coordinate. While it is a handy feature, it could also be exploited by thieves to know your exact address.

You can check on these by opening the following settings

  • Android - Settings > App & Notification > App Permission > Location > Never have access to your Location
  • iOS - Settings > Privacy > Location Service

You should also learn how to spot spam and scams. Hackers might use your leaked email address and phone number to send malicious mails. Do not click on any link sent by a suspicious address.

Update your password regularly. Passwords are still one of the best security measures you could use against thieves. Remember to create strong passwords by having;

  • At least 10 characters or longer
  • Using both upper and lower case letters
  • Using both numbers and symbols in the password.
  • Using two-factor authentication (2FA)

Remember that thieves and hackers are always waiting for an opportunity to scam you. They would also use public websites like LinkedIn to try and steal your data. You can best avoid these circumstances by staying alert on the threat and keeping your account details private.

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