Company’s Security Failures Exposed Data of 2.5 Million Consumers
On October 24, 2022, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced enforcement action against Drizly, an online alcohol marketplace and subsidiary of Uber, and the Drizly CEO, over allegations that Drizly and the CEO failed to implement safeguards to prevent unauthorized access to consumer data stored on the Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS) that Drizly used to host its online marketplace platform. The FTC said that Drizly and its CEO were alerted to a security issue two years before the breach yet failed to take appropriate responsive action to secure personal information of consumers stored on Drizly’s Amazon RDS.
Employee posted company account login information on GitHub contributing to 2018 and 2020 security breaches. In 2018, a Drizly employee posted company cloud computing account login information on GitHub. GitHub is a free, online software development and hosting platform used for storing, tracking and collaborating on software projects. Drizly uses GitHub not only to manage and support its e-commerce website, but also to store spreadsheets, data sets, and repositories of past company data and projects.
Company employee is allowed access to GitHub repositories for a hackathon, using compromised credentials. According to the FTC complaint, in 2020 the company granted a company executive access to the GitHub repositories in order to participate in a one-day hackathon. The company failed to terminate the executive’s access after the event was over. At the time of granting such access, Drizly had not required unique and complex passwords nor multifactor authentication for access to the GitHub repositories. As a result, the executive had used a seven-character, alphanumeric password that he had used for other personal accounts and that was the subject of an unrelated data breach. The hacker used the executive’s compromised password to gain access to his GitHub account and to then access the company’s AWS and database credentials stored in the repositories. Ultimately, the hacker located the customer information stored on the company databases and put the information up for sale on two publicly available websites on the dark web.
Large volume of nonpublic, personal information was accessed by hacker. The FTC said Drizly’s security failures led to a breach of the personal information of about 2.5 million consumers. The personal information includes data collected from consumers who visited or placed e-commerce orders on the platform, such as name, age, email address, postal address, phone numbers, unique device identifiers, order histories, partial payment information, geolocation information, as well as personal information automatically collected from consumer computers and mobile devices by the website’s data collection tools.
In addition, the personal information included consumer data that Drizly purchased from third parties such as income level, marital status, gender, ethnicity, existence of children, and home value. The Drizly databases also contained consumer account passwords that were hashed using MD5 which the FTC said is “cryptographically broken and widely considered insecure.”
The FTC complaint provides a roadmap for minimum reasonable data security measures. The FTC complaint alleges that Drizly failed to implement “reasonable information security practices” to protect consumers’ personal information. These reasonable security practices include:Continue reading