Feeds

On the Microsoft FTP server leak

Oh dear, oh dear

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Microsoft made customer details - along with numerous confidential internal documents - freely available from a deeply insecure FTP server earlier this month.

A well as numerous PowerPoint slides, such as Linux Vs Windows comparisons and .NET strategy papers, Microsoft "published" files an estimated 11 million customer email addresses and seven million snail mail address on the server.

Andreas Marx, a security consultant with German firm Gega IT-Solutions, blames a poorly implemented security policy on the problem. Microsoft has since purged confidential data from the server, but you have to wonder why the data was made so readily available to spammers and goodness knows who else in the first place. The social engineering potential of such leaked data is particularly alarming.

Microsoft's FTP server was designed to exchange data between Microsoft and its customers, mainly for patches.

It was also used by Microsoft staff to upload other kind of files, which they could then download while out of the office. Staff apparently treated it as a secure internal server for data exchange.

It wasn't and that's why numerous confidential files become available to world+dog.

The files with the big customer database were called email*.zip and dmail*.zip. There were also smaller files including customer information related to various Microsoft marketing campaigns, for Tablet PC and Windows Server among other initiatives. Samples from the files, seen by The Register, reveal that customer contact numbers, names and email addresses were all leaked because of the breach.

All these confidential files were protected by the same password which was easily defeated by standard password-cracking tools, another point Microsoft would do well to note in reviewing its security policy. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Ice cream headache as black hat hacks sack Dairy Queen
I scream, you scream, we all scream 'DATA BREACH'!
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
JLaw, Kate Upton exposed in celeb nude pics hack
100 women victimised as Apple iCloud accounts reportedly popped
New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records
'Federated search' spaffed info all over Five Eyes chums
Three quarters of South Korea popped in online gaming raids
Records used to plunder game items, sold off to low lifes
Oz fed police in PDF redaction SNAFU
Give us your metadata, we'll publish your data
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.