What’s being referred to as the biggest password leak of all time was discovered online earlier this week.
A 100GB text file was found on a hacker forum that contains billions of passwords…8.4 billion to be exact. All of the passwords were collected from past data breaches over the last few years. And while experts say the list contains 8.4 billion passwords, the user who leaked it claims there are 82 billion passwords in total.
Either way, a ton of passwords were exposed for billions of people worldwide. The name of the report with all of the passwords was titled RockYou2021, which is believed to be a reference to the RockYou data breach back in 2009 that exposed millions of passwords due to a cyberattack on the social game developer.
And while the thought of billions of passwords floating around online seems scary, some experts are cautioning the public not to panic.
“Our own investigation of this report has shown that quite a large number of account passwords are recycled from previous breaches and not necessarily active,” said Blue Hexagon CTO and co-founder Saumitra Das.
And while some passwords might not be active, billions of them still could be, so it’s still important to take the leak seriously.
“Any password leaks of large volumes are always alarming to hear and should be taken seriously,” Das added.