Millions of Instagram influencers' info exposed in database leak

Ruben Fields
May 21, 2019

According to TechCrunch, the database was hosted by Amazon Web Services and it was left exposed, without a password, allowing anyone to take a look inside.

As data leaks originating from Menlo Park-headquartered Facebook and its group companies mount, photo-sharing app Instagram has now reported a data breach. As per the report, the data contained influencers' Instagram handles, bios, verification status, location, email, and phone number.

According to United States website TechCrunch, which first reported the incident, the details of more than 49 million users, including private contact information such as email addresses and phone numbers, were all easily accessible.

Discovered by security researcher Anurag Sen, the database also showed the value of each account, based on the number of followers, engagement, reach, likes and shares they had. The data included a ranking of each influencer depending on the number of followers they each have and the response to their posts by other Instagram members.

TechCrunch managed to trace the database back to social media marketing firm from Mumbai named Chtrbox.

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"We're also inquiring with Chtrbox to understand where this data came from and how it became publicly available".

We are investigating whether a third party improperly stored Instagram data, in violation of our policies.

A database containing contact details and records of more than 49 million Instagram users, including popular food bloggers and celebrities, has been leaked online by an Indian marketing company, which somehow obtained the list. This was used to determine how much Chtrbox should pay each influencer/celebrity.

Over the years, the security of users' data remains a concern for social media and e-commerce platforms.

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