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Taylor Swift's Eras Tour Targeted In Major Cyber-Attack By ShinyHunters

Taylor Swift’s Eras tour recently faced a cyber-attack where hackers associated with the group ShinyHunters claimed they had acquired barcode data for hundreds of thousands of tickets. They demanded a substantial ransom from Ticketmaster, threatening to release the data if their demands were not met. The compromised information included ticket specifics from Swift’s concerts in […]

Taylor Swift’s Eras tour recently faced a cyber-attack where hackers associated with the group ShinyHunters claimed they had acquired barcode data for hundreds of thousands of tickets. They demanded a substantial ransom from Ticketmaster, threatening to release the data if their demands were not met.

The compromised information included ticket specifics from Swift’s concerts in Indianapolis, Miami, and New Orleans. The hackers also said they had access to 30 million more barcodes for other big events. However, Ticketmaster and its parent company Live Nation refused to engage in any ransom talks. They assured the public that their ticketing system uses dynamic barcodes that change frequently, so the leaked data wouldn’t work for getting into shows.

Cybersecurity experts have stated that the stolen ticket data won’t allow unauthorized access to events like Taylor Swift’s tour, thanks to Ticketmaster’s advanced security measures. Don Smith from Secureworks explained that creating a working barcode from the leaked data would be extremely difficult for accessing large events.

This incident is part of a growing trend of cyberattacks and ransomware, which have caused significant financial losses across many industries. In 2023 alone, victims reportedly paid $1.1 billion in ransoms. ShinyHunters, known for targeting big companies like Santander and Microsoft, continues to pursue financial gains through such attacks.

Earlier this year, ShinyHunters reportedly hacked into a third-party contractor to get hold of Ticketmaster’s vast customer database, affecting about 560 million people. This breach worsened Live Nation’s existing PR problems, amid accusations of monopolistic behavior in ticket sales.

Taylor Swift’s Eras tour has also faced cybersecurity threats before, such as a breach in Australia that compromised Ticketek accounts, causing issues with ticket reselling. Despite these challenges, measures to reduce risks for fans have included setting up special help desks at concert venues.

The FBI and US Department of Justice have taken action against ShinyHunters by shutting down forums where they posted ransom threats and hacked data. Despite these efforts, the group continues to operate, showing ongoing challenges in fighting cyber threats against large companies and public institutions.

While the recent hack targeted Ticketmaster and Live Nation, the stolen data’s ability to gain unauthorized access to events like Taylor Swift’s tour seems limited due to strong security measures. Nonetheless, the incident highlights the persistent danger cybercriminals pose to organizations handling sensitive customer information, emphasizing the need for constant vigilance and investment in cybersecurity.

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Cyber attackEras TourTaylor SwiftTDGThe Daily Guardian