Massive Time Warner Cable customer data leak blamed on engineers

Around 4 million Time Warner personal records exposed in data leak

The breach was discovered by a third party firm that was working to resolve a data breach at another company.

The company said its early analysis suggested the information belonged to Broadsoft - which developed the MyTWC app.

The leaked records records do not represent individual customers, meaning that fewer than 4 millions customers' personal information was revealed.

"We see more and more examples of how bad actors use leaked or hacked data for a range of crimes or other unethical purposes", said Bob Diachenko, Kromtech's chief communications officer.

Other databases included billing addresses, phone numbers and other contact information. "In this case engineers accidentally leaked not only customer and partner data but also internal credentials that criminals could have easily used to monitor or access company's network and infrastructure".

BroadSoft, a communication software and service provider used by Time Warner Cable, left in excess of 600 GB of private files publicly accessible online in two separate Amazon Web Services repositories, Kromtech Alliance's security research team said in a blog post on Friday.

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"The problem is that the repository was configured to allow public access and exposed extremely sensitive data in the process". They were apparently exposed on the internet because they were stored on an Amazon server without password protection by a vendor.

One text file that dated back to November 2010 contained more than 4 million records which detailed subscribers' usernames, email addresses, Mac addresses, device serial numbers and financial transaction data.

Charter acknowledged the event but said that it has "no indication that any Charter systems were impacted" in an emailed statement. To be on the safe side, though, Charter is recommending that MyTWC owners change their user names and passwords.

Broadsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Charter Communications, the parent company of Time Warner Cable, said users' financial information had not been exposed and the data largely concerned former or "legacy" customers. While it's unclear how numerous customers are still current subscribers, if you happen to be a TWC (now Charter Spectrum) customer, it's a great idea to be on the lookout for any suspicious activity related to any of your accounts for the immediate future.

"We continue to work closely with our customers to ensure the privacy of their data and to assure them that their information and that of their end-users is secure", it added. "We apologise for the frustration and anxiety this causes, and will communicate directly to customers if their information was involved in this incident".

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