By CultureBanx Team
- Hackers leak email addresses tied to 235 million Twitter accounts
- Black adults comprise Twitter’s largest ethnic group at 29%, far ahead of Hispanics and Whites at 23% and 22% respectively
An Israeli cybersecurity firm claims that hackers obtained the email addresses of more than 235 million Twitter users on a popular underground marketplace. This could create a plethora of problems for the social media platform where Black adults comprise its largest ethnic group at 29%, far ahead of Hispanics and Whites at 23% and 22% respectively, according to Pew Research Center. When it comes to data breaches they are often more problematic for people of color living on fixed or low incomes, therefore mitigating widespread damage from this data breach to these communities is imperative for Twitter to restore confidence to its users.
Why This Matters: The leak of email addresses may have taken place as early as 2021, which was before Elon Musk took over ownership of the company last year. In August, Twitter stated it had learned of the vulnerability in January 2022 through its reward program for bug reports. The vulnerability had been accidentally introduced in a code update seven months before that. It’s plausible hackers could use the email addresses to attempt to reset passwords and take control of accounts.
“This database is going to be used by hackers, political hacktivists and of course governments to harm our privacy even further,” said Alon Gal, co-founder of the Israeli security company Hudson Rock to The Washington Post. It’s imperative for there to be accountability when it comes to these types of email address leaks under Twitter’s current private leadership.
Situations like these have a negative impact on Black people are 53% more likely to claim a data breach led to a loss or decrease in business, according to a report from the Rand Corporation. People of color often fall victim to incorrect or stolen information, that in turn can have long-term crippling effects.
When it comes to receiving notifications of a breach, 49% of white people reported receiving significantly more notifications than all other ethnic groups. In particular, they reported receiving twice as many notifications as Black people at 24%, according to the Rand Corporation report. This is extremely important data for Twitter to take into account if it decides to do user outreach around this breach.
The epicenter of social media and culture collide everyday when #BlackTwitter shapes global conversations. No internet subsection has a stronger connected Black community than Twitter. It is not a separate platform, but rather an open secret to spark change, nostalgia and intellectual civic discourse.
Situational Awareness: Unfortunately, this type of data breach leaves the future of marginalized consumers, such as ethnic and racial minorities in an extremely uncertain position. Twitter has not commented on the Washington Post report or responded to inquiries regarding the leaked emails.
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