- Hacking is often touted as the “negative side” or the “dark side” of the internet. There are various reasons for the same. Hacking has given cybercriminals access to confidential information that has jeopardized the security of various companies and even Governments. Just like we have criminals roaming around in the real world, the cyber world too is filled with cybercriminals who are keeping a watch on important data like hawks.
- If you are interested in knowing about the cyber-attacks or the hacking attacks that have rocked the cyber world, we suggest you read on.
- In this post, we will be covering the top hacking attacks in the world.
List of the Top Hacking Attacks in the World
Let us dive into the list of the top hacking attacks in the world:
1) Delta Airlines – In 2004, Sven Jaschan, a German college student, carried out one of the top hacking attacks in the world when he brought down the IT system of the American Airlines, Delta. He came with a “Sasser worm” that was a self-distributing virus that attacked virus-prone Microsoft Windows Operating Systems. It jeopardized 10 million computers worldwide and resulted in damage of $500 million. Delta, one of the victims, had to cancel many of its transatlantic flights. Jaschan eventually came into the hands of the legal authorities.
2) Iceman – Another attack that hampered cyber security was carried out by Max Ray Butler, a respected IT Security Consultant. Known as the most infamous hacker, “Iceman”, he stole 2 million credit card numbers and used them to buy items worth $86 million in 2007. He was arrested later on. His cyber shenanigans didn’t stop at that. It is also said that he ran the “Carders Market” to facilitate buying and selling of online contraband.
3) CitiGroup – In 2011, there came a cyber-attack that shook the world. One of the top hacking attacks in the world was carried out by taking advantage of the vulnerabilities in CitiGroup’s online platforms. The hackers gained access to the accounts of more than 200,000 customers by taking advantage of the URL that changed with every single input of a valid username and password. The hackers stole account numbers, names, and addresses and stole $2.7 million. This hacking attack exposed the weaknesses in the security softwares of even top systems.
4) Mt Gox Bitcoin Exchange – This cyber-attack occurred in 2014 and features next on our list of the top hacking attacks in the world. Bitcoin allows users to convert real currency into bitcoin on its various websites or exchanges. Mt Gox Bitcoin Exchange, which is also the biggest exchange in the world, was said to have become inoperative as trading suddenly stopped. What had happened? It actually went bankrupt when hackers stole and used the username and password of 60,000 users to steal Bitcoin currency worth $460 million.
5) Bangladesh Bank Robbery – Another top hacking attack in the hacking world occurred in 2016. The hackers hacked into the bank’s IT system, the SWIFT global money transfer system that allowed them to withdraw a huge amount of money to the tune of $81 million. The hackers had initially wanted to steal $950 million but were not able to do so because of a simple error.
6) Facebook – Even Facebook was not spared of hacking attacks and in September 2018, there was a Facebook data breach when hackers took advantage of three bugs in the system and jeopardized the data of at least 50 million users. According to Facebook, hackers accessed personal information such as profile names, hometowns, etc. It was not clear if data of other Facebook-synced accounts like Instagram were also hacked.
Cyber-attacks or hacking attacks have given rise to many anti-heroes, be it talented students who do not put their knowledge to good use or organized cybercriminals. Their subtle message is clear – If you don’t work on the vulnerabilities in your system, you can’t save it from us. However, cyber security experts are ready to challenge these notorious hackers and have included sophistication and innovation in the cyber security systems that have led to an exponential growth of the cyber security industry.
What can you do?
As online users, you can ensure your device undergoes security updates from time to time. Not only this, but you should also ensure that your antivirus is up to date and works for you. Apart from this, you need to be careful about spam emails and be watchful of everything that is happening on your device.