TikTok data breach claims put ByteDance’s short video app back in spotlight amid controversy over Chinese ownership

Bloomberg News reports:

TikTok, the short-video sensation that’s among the world’s most downloaded apps, is coming under increased scrutiny about its data security as it guards the personal information of over a billion users.

On Monday, several cybersecurity analysts tweeted about the discovery of what was purportedly a breach of an insecure server that allowed access to TikTok’s storage, which they believe contained personal user data. Only days earlier, Microsoft Corp said it had found a “high-severity vulnerability” in TikTok’s Android application, “which would have allowed attackers to compromise users’ accounts with a single click.

Read more at South China Morning Post.

TikTok had issued a statement that claims of a breach were incorrect, and Troy Hunt had found inconclusive evidence of any breach. The @aggressivecurl account on Twitter that made the claims and provided screencaps has not retracted.

Minutes after posting the above, Bob Diachenko tweeted that the breach is real:

Update: Minutes after tweeting that, Bob backed off a bit, tweeting:
“UPDATE: while there is definitely a breach, it is still work in progress to confirm the origin of data, could be a third party.”

Given the unreliability of claims made in tweets, DataBreaches will not be updating this post further until there is something really incontrovertible to report.

Update: In an interesting development, the hacking community has called b.s. on AgainstTheWest’s claims.  In response to their claims and thread on Breach Forums, the owner of Breach Forums, “Pompompurin,” has banned AgainstTheWest for lying about data breaches, and wrote this note:

Staff edit: This thread was restored due to multiple people asking for it back. AgainstTheWest initially deleted it. Please note that the breach is not from TikTok, and that he most likely was lying or didn’t even investigate it before making such outrageous claims. AgainstTheWest has had a long history of lying about breaches or other things (Saying he’s a State sponsored hacking group… lol) and this was just the tipping point.

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