's likely the largest ever data breach in Asia. Malaysian officials are investigating an alleged attempt to sell personal information for more than 46 million mobile phone subscribers online, believed to effect almost the entire country's population. The cache of data includes phone numbers, ID info, home addresses, and SIM cards across at least 12 Malaysian phone companies.
Officials haven't said how the data was stolen but as Reuters reports, it could mean a lot potential damage in the wrong hands.>> So what expertise are the leaked data's extensive enough to allow criminals to create fraudulent identities to make online purchases? The leak was first reported by this Malaysian online portal called Lowyat.net.
They had a report out as early as October 19, saying that someone was trying to aggressively sell this person data on the forums around that time. Data analysis apparently shows the data breach happened in 2014, but it's not still clear how long that data has been available online.
>> The country's Internet regulator only made an announcement about the leak on Wednesday, leaving some analyst wondering why officials may have been slowly to react.>> So the agency responsible for this said they are looking into it alongside with the police and a minister has also said that they're investigating several potential sources of the leak.
But there has still been no official confirmation from the authorities on how big this leak is and what kind of data is out there. Even the mobile service providers have only said they're cooperating with authorities, but they've not shared any details on what the affected customer should be doing.
So it does appear that Malaysia is ill-prepared to handle this.>> And the price for all this crucial data, according to one cybersecurity expert, it was initially being sold on several underground Internet sites for one Bitcoin, about $6,500, at least one other user was posting it for free.