Data reportedly linked to several foreign intelligence agencies was published online this week after a breach at the Qatar National Bank.
The 1.4GB leak, initially posted to Global-Files.net by the suspected hacker(s) Monday, contains everything from customers’ names, passwords and credit card numbers to records on foreign officials.
According to IBTimes writer Jason Murdock, one folder labeled “SPY, Intelligence” includes records on the Ministry of Defence, MI6, Qatar’s State Security Bureau and the Polish and French intelligence services.
“The MI6 file, which sits alongside similar documents reportedly from Polish and French intelligence, opens up an in-depth report on an alleged agent,” Murdock writes. “This includes names of close relations, phone numbers, social media accounts and credit card data.”
“Furthermore, in one instance, a file marked ‘wife’, opens a photo showing a woman and two children. There are roughly a dozen of these intelligence dossiers included in the Qatar data dump.”
As noted by cybersecurity expert Simon Edwards, data regarding social media accounts was likely gathered by the hackers, not the bank, in an attempt to build profiles on future targets.
“Interestingly, there is also additional data about mainly foreign bank account holders, which includes information such as their Facebook and LinkedIn profiles, along with ‘friends’ associated through those social networks,” Edwards said. “This data doesn’t appear to have come directly from the bank itself, rather the perpetrator used the data held by the bank to then build up profiles of further targets.”
Another folder titled “Al Jazeera” also appears to hold information personal information on scores of journalists.
“The alleged banking leak also openly lists a folder marked ‘Al Jazeera’ that stores nearly 30 separate profiles alongside a Microsoft Excel file that holds more than 1,200 records – including national ID numbers, telephone numbers and home addresses,” Murdock says. “Much like the intelligence files, the Al Jazeera disclosure contains a number of entries labelled ‘SPY’ and also includes images of the person alongside social accounts, banking data and passwords.”
In response to the alleged breach, the Qatar National Bank released a statement on its website saying the matter was under investigation.
“Referring to social media speculation in regard to an alleged data breach, it is QNB Group policy not to comment on reports circulated via social media. QNB would like to take this opportunity to assure all concerned that there is no financial impact on our clients or the Bank.”
Although the file was taken down from Global-Files.net, the data continues to spread on several other platforms.