Since last month, hundreds of Nintendo users have reported their accounts been hacked and accessed from remote locations. More than 5,00,000 Zoom Accounts are just floating on the hacker forums hosted on the Dark Web. Lately, Researchers have identified more than 700 malicious Netflix & Disney Plus clones that are used by hackers to scrape a victim’s data. These fraudulent clone websites are either stealing money via fake subscriptions or just harvesting user’s data to gather banking details & other login credentials for their good.
Do you realize all these recent data theft frauds have one thing in common? Well, till now there has been no indication that all these frauds are a result of a breach at the company’s levels, but it was rather due to Credential Stuffing Attack. A type of brute-force attack, where usernames and passwords are tested against websites in an automated way, to take over the account.
Part 1- Credential Stuffing In Action
One crucial aspect that is worth noting is, users are very protective these days when it comes to their digital privacy. Nowadays, people tend to keep ‘complex passwords‘ – the one which is a combination of both upper & lower characters, with numbers and special characters. But unfortunately, after having one strong password, people face difficulties to have a unique one for their other sites & services.
Eventually, they end up keeping the same password for all. It means, now hackers do not need special databases to perform credential stuffing. They can simply refer to some large databases & attempt to access Netflix, Nintendo, Zoom or any other service with usernames & passwords from that database.
According to the researchers, “There has been a use of ‘OpenBullet’ to conduct Zoom-related credential stuffing. Based on the OpenBullet GitHub page, it is an online testing tool used dedicatedly for scraping and parsing user data. It’s an open-source tool to make the credential stuffing attack straightforward & easy.”
So, without further ado, let’s take a look at the Anatomy of Credential Stuffing Attack, how it works & what you can do to prevent it?
Part 2- Anatomy Of A Credential Stuffing
Well, Credential Stuffing Attack is just a simple workaround to take over a user’s account. Similar credentials used multiple times, exposes the threat to attack and gain unauthorized access. Though the attack seems challenging to pull off, even the newbie hackers can perform this cyberattack via specific online tools that are readily available on the Internet.
According to a recent study, the shocking 43 Percent of the login credentials submitted through websites are just an account takeover attempt. The sole reason behind Credential Stuffing is Reusing of Passwords.
The most targeted organizations by Credential Stuffing Attacks have been from the E-Commerce, Financial, Entertainment & Social Media, IT, Telecommunications, Transportations, and Retail industries.
The result of a successful Credential Stuffing attack is Account Takeover, while the stolen & valid credentials are sold to third parties to drain the account of stored value or for stealing the data.
Overview of Credential Abuse & Account Takeover
Part 3- How Does Credential Stuffing Attack Works?
The typical process followed by an attacker to perform Credential Stuffing is described below:
STEP 1- Creates and sets up a bot, that works automatically to log into several accounts while faking the IP Addresses.
STEP 2- Further, they run an automated process to check if the stolen credentials is workable for several websites or not. There are a variety of credential stuffing tools available on malicious platforms that incorporate ‘proxy lists’ to bounce the request around the web & make it look as if they are coming from different IP Addresses.
STEP 3- They regularly monitor to find profitable credentials and obtain (PII) Personally Identifiable Information, such as banking details and other privacy-related data.
STEP 4- They retain the account information for later use, such as targeting with phishing attacks. They even copy the data and sell it or publish (mostly on Dark Web) for other hackers to use.
Once attackers gain access to the victim’s data, they use it for various types of mischief, such as Selling Access to compromised accounts (just like Netflix & Disney+), impersonate as legitimate users and commit e-commerce fraud. While both the above crimes have some severe consequences to customers, another fraud’ Corporate/Institutional espionage and theft’ has the potential to be most devastating for businesses.
In case an attacker gains access to the employee’s or admin’s data, they can figure out all sorts of sensitive internal information, which they might sell to the highest bidders.
- What Significance Does Cybersecurity For Businesses Have In Enterprise?
- Are Companies Prepared For Cyber Attacks?
Part 4- Why Credential Stuffing Is Gaining Popularity Among Hackers?
In a nutshell, Credential Stuffing Attack is on the rise because the technique is entirely automated, straightforward, and simple. Since the market is getting packed with Top Internet Security Solutions with complex functionalities, hacking into a system with sophisticated and advanced methods, have become vigorous. Therefore, getting into Credential Stuffing comes as a cost-effective & easy to break into the system using basic techniques that turn effectual.
No matter if a user relies on smart & advanced security detection and protection solutions, if he/she behaves in a risky manner, a security loophole would always be created.
In a Credential Stuffing Attack, a user just needs to set the same password for multiple accounts, to become a victim. According to various researchers, keeping common passwords is one of the most common mistakes that a user makes which opens the door for hackers to implement quick exploitations.
Part 5- Measures You Can Adopt To Prevent Credential Stuffing Attack
Protecting yourself from Credential Stuffing Attacks is pretty simple & involves just a few security practices to follow.
1. Maintain Good Password Hygiene
Avoid using the same password for each of your accounts. These types of attacks are conducted because users tend to set the same or similar-looking passwords for their multiple accounts.
2. Have Multi-Factor Authentication Enabled For All Your Accounts
Cybercriminals are coming up with better & more sophisticated techniques to extract personal data and other privacy-related traces. To prevent them, a multi-layered security approach is an excellent workaround available.
3. Periodically Reset Your Passwords
You should consider making it an essential to-do to ensure better security & privacy. Make sure you do not use the previously used password.
4. Make Sure You Do Not Use The Same Password For Your Personal & Professional Accounts
Well, there are several companies which encourage its employees to perform periodic digital clean-up. Means, they have made it mandatory to change their password every six months & keep it different for their work & personal use.
5. Ensure The Threat Protection Service You Are Using Is Flawless
One does not need to be a genius to understand that keeping an Antivirus solution as a shield on the top of your system is so quintessential these days. We urge our readers to protect their systems with best-in-class Antivirus Protection for Windows, Mac, Android, iPhone & other devices.
Part 6- How Systweak Protects Users Against Credential Stuffing Attacks & Account Takeover?
Systweak brings one of the most advanced solutions that help users to deflect even the most sophisticated attacks!
For starters, it offers a dedicated password management app, TweakPass that provides a special vault secured with AES-256-Bit Encryption, PBKDF2 SHA-256 & HMac to ensure 360-degree protection of your credentials & personal data. Since we have learnt that reusing the same passwords increases the risk of Credential Stuffing. It offers a Password Generator feature that suggests complex and unique passwords for all your accounts, websites & services. Moreover, it is not required that you learn all these lengthy and strong passwords because TweakPass does that for you. It even allows you to autofill the credentials and other personal data in just a matter of seconds.
Read More About The Password Manager App, Here!
For ultimate identity protection & security, they have Advanced Identity Protector. It is a sophisticated tool that helps users freely transact over multiple sites while keeping their data confidential. It performs a single scan over your machine & detects all the sensitive information related to your identity that may pose a threat & easily be available for hackers to commit crimes in your name. Once you find the hidden traces like Social Security Number, Credit Card Details, Contact Information etc., you can choose the store them in a Secure Vault or get rid of them completely, so that it doesn’t go into wrong hands.
Part 7 – Bottom Line
There is no scarcity of Internet threats which puts the end consumers at risk and keeps IT Professionals busy. Credential Stuffing is one of the scariest risks that brings a significant threat to users. For these reasons, every individual is advised to use unique passwords, protect their accounts with multi-factor authentication & maintain digital hygiene, especially when they suspect they are using any of the fraudulent websites or services.