In the wake of the January 6th attack on the US Capitol, a number of major corporations in Silicon Valley have begun work to prevent another such incident from taking place, especially as authorities in the nation’s capital warn that there’s plenty of online chatter about interfering with Joe Biden’s inauguration.
In this purge of MAGA-aligned voices, social media platform Parler has been completely taken offline after its web hosting companies declared the site unfit for publication.
Just before Parler went dark, however, hackers were able to scrape an unfathomable amount of private data from users, much of which Parler had been negligent in protecting.
The scrape includes user profile data, user information, and which users had administration rights for specific groups within the social network. Twitter user @donk_enby, who first announced about the scrape, claims that over a million video URLs, some deleted and private, were taken.
“These are original, unprocessed, raw files as uploaded to Parler with all associated metadata,” claims one of the authors.
Security researchers claim that the scrapped posts are linked to accounts that posted them, and some of the video and image data have geolocation information. That is said also to include data from Parler’s “Verified Citizens,” users of the network who verified their identity by uploading photographs of government-issued IDs, such as a driver’s license.
The hacker was able to gain access to administrator accounts on the platform due to lax security measures that allowed them reset high level passwords to their liking.
The data could be used to track down any potential organizers of the January 6th storming of the Capitol, if they were inclined to used Parler to recruit and plan.
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