Data belonging to 1.9 million customers was stolen from Bell Canada in a massive security breach, announced the country’s largest telecom company earlier this week. The compromised information consists of email addresses, names and telephone numbers, including 1,700 active numbers.
“The illegally accessed information contains approximately 1.9 million active email addresses and approximately 1,700 names and active phone numbers,” Bell Canada confirmed.
The identity of the hacker is unknown for now, but the company said the incident was in no way related to the WannaCry ransomware attacks. Bell Canada stated the risks involved were “minimal” for its customers and that “financial, password or other sensitive personal information” was not exposed.
The company is working closely with the RCMP cybercrime unit in its investigation and has informed the Office of the Privacy Commissioner. Affected customers will be contacted directly.
Because the telecom provider did not give in to extortion attempts, the criminal behind the attack released some of the data online, according to a statement posted on Pastebin.
“We are releasing a significant portion of Bell.ca’s data due to the fact that they have failed to [co-operate] with us,” reads the post. “This shows how Bell doesn’t care for its [customers’] safety and they could have avoided this public announcement… Bell, if you don’t [co-operate], more will leak :).”