By Oisin Sweeney •
Published: 05 Jan 2021 • 21:54
Ho Mobile has offered SIM card exchanges to its 2.5 million affected customers - Image Source: Twitter
A MASSIVE at Italian mobile provider Ho Mobile has led to the personal data of 2.5 million customers being stolen by hackers.
On Monday (January 4th) the Vodafone owned company confirmed a massive data breach and is now taking the unprecedented step of offering to replace the SIM cards of all 2.5 million affected customers.
The massive breach was discovered on December 28 by a security analyst who noticed the company’s user database on offer for sale on a darknet forum. While Ho Mobile said no financial data or call details were stolen in the massive breach, the company conceded that cybercriminals now possess details of customers’ SIM cards.
The Italian provider is now offering to replace SIM cards for all impacted customers to prevent widescale telephone fraud, after initially downplaying the enormous breach. Customers were notified of the cybercrime via SMS messages and a statement posted to the company’s website.
“You can go to one of our authorized dealers and request a SIM change free of charge, bringing your current SIM and a valid identity document with you,” the company said on Monday.
Since the SIM card and customer details have been stolen, hackers could potentially request a new SIM card change. As a countermeasure to this, physical presence in the Ho stores will be required, the company said, to prevent the criminals from requesting a SIM change for a legitimate customer.
Ho Mobile said they have launched an ongoing incident into the breach, and the company has been praised by some telecommunications analysts for its rapid efforts to ensure security and peace of mind to users at no cost to customers.
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Oisin is an Irish writer based in Seville, the sunny capital of Andalucia. After starting his working life as a bookseller, he moved into journalism and cut his teeth as a reporter at one of Ireland's biggest news websites. Since joining Euro Weekly News in November, he has enjoyed covering the latest stories from Seville, Spain and further afield - with special interests in crime, cybersecurity, and European politics. Anyone who can pronounce his name first try gets a free cerveza...
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