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Weekly recap: colossal Twitter leak, Meta fines piling up, and Amazon layoffs


Here's this week's recap – a brief summary of leaks, hacks, and most important tech news observed by Cybernews between January 2 – January 6, 2023.

The week started off relatively slow, mostly with breaches quietly disclosed during the holiday season. However, as people slowly return to work, new threats emerge, and tech companies come into the spotlight. Here are a couple of highlights from this week.

Amazon fires thousands

Amazon will cut more than 18,000 roles, which amounts to about 6% of its 300,000-people-strong corporate workforce and about 1.2% of its total number of 1.5 million employees.

According to Layoffs.fyi, a website that tracks job cuts across the tech industry, more than 153,000 people worldwide were fired in the sector in 2022.

Another hefty fine for Meta

Ireland’s privacy watchdog fined Meta over $400m for breaches of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR.) Meta is said to have used its Terms of Service to gain users’ forced consent for targeted advertising. The company is going to appeal the fines.

The Irish regulator's decision comes merely a month after another hefty fine. Last November, it was fined €265m ($277m) over a leak that exposed hundreds of millions of user records.

LastPass sued

Someone has filed a petition for a lawsuit against the password management service provider LastPass following two data breaches the company suffered last year, alleging that the firm’s “data security failures” led to critical security incidents.

One of the parties behind the lawsuit, an individual from the state of Pennsylvania, claims he lost $53k worth of Bitcoin due to a compromised password that was stored on the LastPass customer vault.

Your data is up for grabs

We’ve updated our personal data leak checker with over 200 million Twitter user details posted online for free – now you can check for yourself to see if your data shared with Twitter has been leaked.

Threat actors exposed an unprecedented amount of information about Twitter users, including over 200 million unique records of usernames and email addresses. Worryingly, the database is available for anyone to download, posing severe security risks to millions of people.

In late December, threat actors posted an ad on a popular hacking forum, claiming they were selling the data of over 400 million Twitter users. At the time, threat actors wanted to sell the data for up to $200k.

ChatGPT is dangerous

ChatGPT, while a fun and even useful tool to play with, also proves to be a nightmare for some. A Princeton student has already built an app to check whether fellow students cheat and use chatGPT to write essays.

We’ve conducted a little experiment of our own in an attempt to find out whether malicious hackers could exploit this tool for nefarious purposes.

Cybernews researchers warn that AI chatbot, while fun to experiment with, might also be dangerous since it is able to give detailed advice on exploiting any vulnerability.

On the other hand, the team sees the potential of AI in cybersecurity. The field’s specialists could use AI's input to prevent most data leaks. It could also help developers to monitor and test their implementation more efficiently.


Editor’s choice:

Space security recap: Ukraine, Starlink, and soft underbelly

How hackers might be exploiting ChatGPT

Humanoid robots likely ten years away, says AI expert

Cybersecurity innovations to look forward to in 2023

Innovation dies where monopolies thrive: why Meta is failing at metaverse

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