The central theses
- A seller on RaidForums attempted to sell data that allegedly came from the Paxful crypto exchange.
- According to Paxful, the data is not user records from the exchange, but rather old employee records from a payroll page.
- While Paxful’s report on the incident is likely to be accurate, user data breaches are widespread.
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Peer-to-Peer Bitcoin Exchange Paxful says its user data has not been leaked despite claims to the contrary by a person attempting to sell the allegedly staggering data.
Stolen data is not a user record
A member of the stolen data marketplace RaidForums recently put a database up for sale that allegedly contains information on 4.8 million Paxful customers and employees. This data would include the names, dates of birth, and contact information of Paxful’s users.
However, it appears that the data for sale is actually absent. Ray Youssef, CEO of Paxful, stated on Twitter that “all funds and identities are safe”. He added that “no user data has been leaked [and] No offense was ever committed [against] our users. Ignore the FUD. “
He claimed that the leaked data was in fact “old employee records from a payroll company that we no longer use”.
It is likely that Youssef’s account is correct. According to Decrypt, potential buyers of the allegedly stolen data were unwilling to pay because Paxful had not reported a breach. RaidForums administrators have also reportedly classified the sale as suspicious.
Has data been stolen?
While Paxful may not have been under attack, crypto companies are common targets for data theft. In 2021 alone, KeepChange and BuyUCoin saw data leaks. In recent years, Ledger, Poloniex, BitMEX and BTC Markets have also disclosed user data.
Both actual and imaginary data leaks could encourage some users to switch to a decentralized exchange that does not store user records.
However, even that is not enough to solve the problem as non-crypto websites can also be hacked. According to Wikipedia, over 350 companies have recorded user data breaches since 2004, including large tech companies like Yahoo and Facebook.
Disclaimer: At the time of writing, this author held less than $ 75 in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Altcoins.
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