Hacker steals Bitdefender customer log-in credentials, attempts blackmail

The hacker exploited a vulnerability in an outdated software component to extract information from a single server

Digital key

Digital key

A hacker extracted customer log-in credentials from a server owned by Bitdefender that hosted the cloud-based management dashboards for its small and medium-size business clients.

The antivirus firm confirmed the security breach, but said in an emailed statement that the attack affected less than 1 percent of its SMB customers, whose passwords have since been reset. Consumer and enterprise customers were not affected, the company said.

The hacker, who uses the online alias DetoxRansome, first bragged about the breach on Twitter Saturday and later messaged Bitdefender threatening to release the company's "customer base" unless he was paid US$15,000.

To prove his point, the next day he published the email addresses and passwords for two Bitdefender customer accounts and one for an account operated by the company itself.

Travis Doering and Dan McPeake claimed in a blog post that they contacted the hacker, who offered to sell the data to them.

The hacker provided a list of user names and matching passwords for over 250 Bitdefender accounts, some of which were confirmed to be active, the two wrote Wednesday.

Doering and McPeake said that they shared the information with Bitdefender

According to them, when they asked DetoxRansome how he obtained the log-in credentials, he replied that he was "sniffing" one of Bitdefender's "major servers."

Bitdefender confirmed that the attack did not exploit a zero-day vulnerability -- a vulnerability that is previously unknown.

The issue was the result of human error: During an infrastructure increase, a single server was deployed with an outdated software package that had a known flaw, enabling the extraction of information, but not a full system compromise, said Catalin Cosoi, chief security strategist at Bitdefender.

He declined to name the vulnerable package.

The issue was resolved and additional security measures have been put in place to prevent its reoccurrence, the company said in its statement. "Our investigation revealed no other server or services were impacted."

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags intrusionsecuritydata breachbitdefender

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Lucian Constantin

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?