Dec. 20 (UPI) — Virtually every single American household has been affected by a massive data breach that exposed private information, according to a cybersecurity firm report.
Security researchers with the UpGuard Cyber Risk Team said a cloud-based data repository was left online by Alteryx, a California-based data analytics firm. The breach included massive data sets belonging to Alteryx partner, Experian, the consumer credit reporting agency recently involved in one of the biggest data breaches in history.
Individual names were not exposed in the data breach, but a wide array of other personal information used to identify individuals was included in the exposed data, which was available to download online until last week.
“From home addresses and contact information, to mortgage ownership and financial histories, to very specific analysis of purchasing behavior, the exposed data constitutes a remarkably invasive glimpse into the lives of American consumers,” UpGuard said in a statement.
Other information exposed included age, gender, education, occupation and marital status, which Experian calls the “bread and butter of marketing data,” demographics, UpGuard said.
An Alteryx spokesperson told Forbes that it fixed the breach and denied the exposed information put people at risk of identity theft.
“Specifically, this file held marketing data, including aggregated and de-identified information based on models and estimations provided by a third-party content provider, and was made available to our customers who purchased and used this data for analytic purposes,” Alteryx said.
UpGuard researcher Chris Vickery called Alteryx’s assessment of the data breach “incredibly misleading.”
“I do not understand how anyone could possibly claim there is no risk posed here,” he told Forbes. “Addresses, phone numbers, banking, ethnicity, etc. is all present. There is a great deal of harm that could be done with this information.”