Hacked Twitter accounts more valuable to cyber thieves than credit cards

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Cyber thieves can make more money out of stolen Twitter credentials than from stolen credit card data on the black market, a report by the Research and Development Corporation (RAND) says. The survey called “Markets for Cybercrime Tools and Stolen Data” was commissioned by Juniper Networks.

“Usernames and passwords can often be used as an entry point to launch attacks on the person’s accounts on a number of other sites,” Juniper Networks employee Michael Callahan wrote in his blog.

He stressed that the value of stolen social media information is rising, while the value of credit card credentials continued to fall after several high-profile breaches.

According to Michael Callahan, during a big data breach the price of credit card details dropped from 15 dollars or 20 dollar per record down to 75 cents over a short period of time.

Social media accounts are acquiring greater popularity among scammers. The RAND report points out that hacking into accounts can fetch anywhere from 16 dollars to 325 dollars + depending on the account type.

The report makes it clear that the hacker market has turned into a playground of financially driven, highly organized and sophisticated teams.

The report warns that in the future the world will see more activity in darknets, more use of cryptocurrencies, greater anonymity capabilities in malware, and more attention to encrypting and protecting communications and transactions.

What is a paradox here is the fact that the more encryption methods are invented, the more effort is made to hack them.

In December, Internet security firm Trustwave said that over two million passwords for popular social networking sites, including Facebook, Twitter, Google, and Yahoo accounts had been stolen and posted online.

Voice of Russia, ZDNet, RT
Read more: http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2014_03_30/Hacked-Twitter-accounts-more-valuable-for-cyber-thieves-than-credit-cards-9136/