Ever since the massive security breach in Sony's PlayStation network accounts came to light last month, there have been fears that other large networks could come under similar attacks. And these fears are well-founded according to a comprehensive report published by 24/7 Wall Street.
The report says large networks with subscriber bases in the tens or hundreds of millions of people will be the typical objects of such attacks in future. Networks where subscribers have likely given commercially useful data like credit cards, addresses, purchasing habits, details about daily activities, large lists of friends and relatives, will be especially vulnerable, the report says.
The following is a sneak peek into some major networks highlighted in the report which are likely to become hackers' target in the future:
1. Apple iTunes Store
One major network likely to become hackers' target is Apple iTunes Store. With 150 million users, more than 10 billion songs in the sold list and over 10 billion apps downloaded, the network will be a magnet for trouble in future.
The social networking giant has 600 million users, and has operations in as many as 60 countries. Facebook's servers contain more personal information than any other site on the web, says the report. The fact that Facebook credit card numbers of millions of users in its database makes it particularly attractive to hackers.
LinkedIn has 100 million users and has nearly 50 million unique monthly visitors. Also, LinkedIn is the world’s most popular business-oriented social network, according to the report. The report quotes the company’s S-1, which says the website is vulnerable to attacks which could cause “loss of critical data or the unauthorized disclosure or use of personally identifiable or other confidential information,” belonging to users.
Netflix has 23.6 million Users and it has delivered well more than 1 billion DVDs. Netflix members have shared home addresses, phone numbers and credit card information. Netflix also streams its content through more than 200 different platforms, including the PlayStation
Network, and the identities of Netflix users may be at risk through the latest hack.
5. Xbox Live
Xbox Live has 30 million users and the Xbox 360, which sold more than 50 million units this year, has over 30 million users for its popular Xbox LIVE network, the report says.