Hackers Used Google to Steal Social Security Numbers from 43,000 Yalies

Illustration for article titled Hackers Used Google to Steal Social Security Numbers from 43,000 Yalies

Hackers accessed personal information from 43,000 faculty, staff, students and alumni of Yale University all through Google. It's called dorking. Specifically, Google dorking. And it's scary easy what you can do.


Thieves found an unprotected FTP server containing the names and social security numbers of the 43,000 yalies by just using Google's FTP search function. Mike Lloyd, chief scientist at RedSeal a security firm, thinks that by having Google around, hackers don't even have to be that creative:

"Most victims are targets of opportunity. Chances are that anyone who got the data from Yale wasn't looking for Yale."


I thought I was good at the Google but these Google 'dorks' are even better. They've set up a whole database (which can be found here) that can be used to get started. As awesome and indispensable as Google has been to our lives, they need to patch up these holes pronto. [USA Today, Image Credit: Shutterstock]

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So 43,000 preppy yuppies in training had their social security numbers stolen because their school is dumb about how they store stuff.

I'd say the only one I feel pity for here is Google given how Gizmodo put Google's icon in the image for the article, it's pretty clear that Giz is trying to imply that Google is somewhat responsible for the theft in order to get clicks to the article. That's pretty shitty in my entirely unsolicited but 100% correct opinion.