A database of more than 49 million records containing contact informations for millions of Instagram influencers, celebrities, and brand accounts was recently leaked online.
TechCrunch reports the database was hosted by Amazon Web Services and was accessible without a password or other credentials according to the security researcher who informed the publication about the leak.
Public Instagram data was included in the leak, including profile picture, biography, and follower numbers, and also included private contact information such as phone numbers and email addresses.
The database was traced back to Mumbai-based social media marketing firm Chtrbox, which pays influencers to post sponsored content on their accounts. The records included the calculated “worth” of each account based on follower count, engagement, reach, likes, and shares. The information was used as a metric to determine how much the company could pay an Instagram celebrity or influencer to post an ad.
Once it was notified by TechCrunch, Chtrbox took the database offline, however the company refused to share information on how the data was obtained.
Instagram parent firm Facebook says it is looking into the issue and aiming to determine whether the data was from Instagram or other sources.