An anonymous hacker is selling what appears to be a massive trove of data pilfered from the Shanghai police through an Alibaba Cloud that could include personal information from 1 billion Chinese nationals. File Photo by Alex Plaveski/EPA-EFE
July 5 (UPI) -- An anonymous hacker is selling what appears to be a massive trove of data pilfered from the Shanghai police that could include personal information from 1 billion Chinese nationals, according to reports on Tuesday.
The data is allegedly from a police database, and some of it has been confirmed as legitimate by CNN, although the network could not verify the authenticity of the entire cache.
If confirmed, it would mark one of the largest personal data leaks in history, the Wall Street Journal reported.
"In 2022, the Shanghai National Police (SHGA) database was leaked. This database contains many TB of data and information on Billions of Chinese citizens," the hacker or group, using a pseudonym, wrote in the post originally added to an online message board June 30.
All of the data was allegedly publicly accessible through what appeared to be an unsecured backdoor link. The shortcut web address offers unrestricted access to anyone who knows about it and the hacker claimed the link had been active since at least April 2021, CNN reported.
The hacker started advertising the data for sale, with an initial price of 10 Bitcoin, or approximately $20,000.
The person claimed the information stems from a private but unprotected cloud computing provider called Aliyun, which is a subsidiary of Chinese-owned Alibaba Group and provides computing services to online businesses.
Purloined information includes names, addresses, birth dates, phone numbers, national ID numbers and extensive criminal records, according to the anonymous hacker.
The Shanghai Municipal Police had not issued a comment as of 6pm ET Tuesday.