The T-Mobile data breach, which exposed the personal details of over 54 million consumers, has rocked the industry. Expectedly, the company’s CEO Mike Sievert has penned an apology to its customers. Separately, the carrier also announced new partnerships to bolster its cybersecurity credentials (via Engadget).
“To say we are disappointed and frustrated that this happened is an understatement,” Sievert said in the post.
The carrier said that the hacker used IT infrastructure tools and prior knowledge to access the testing system. “In short, this individual’s intent was to break in and steal data, and they succeeded,” the post said.
T-Mobile said it will provide 2 years of free McAfee ID Theft Protection to the impacted consumers
The carrier expressed its commitment to improving cybersecurity and winning back its customers’ trust. Understandably, the carrier has a lot of unhappy customers after this incident. The breach reportedly gave the hacker access to customers’ personal information like names, social security numbers, addresses, etc.
T-Mobile said that it has contacted almost all current customers or primary account holders who had names, SSN, or their addresses leaked via the cyberattack. Moreover, the company will provide two years of free access to the McAfee ID Theft Protection service to the affected customers. While this is unlikely to appease angry customers, it’s certainly a good place to start.
In a bid to avoid future attacks, T-Mobile has signed deals with firms like Mandiant and KPMG. Sievert says the companies will help T-Mobile audit its security practices and build systems that prevent cyberattacks in the future.
“I am confident in these partnerships and optimistic about the opportunity they present to help us come out of this terrible event in a much stronger place with improved security measures,” Sievert added.
According to the hacker John Binns, T-Mobile’s security infrastructure was in a poor condition. Shortly after the discovery of the cyberattack, T-Mobile said that the breach hit 850,000 prepaid accounts and 7.8 million postpaid customers. Additionally, the hacker accessed 40 million records belonging to former customers and people applying for credit.
However, the hacker claimed that the breach gave access to almost 100 million accounts. This covers almost every T-Mobile customer. While carriers like AT&T have also faced similar trouble, T-Mobile appears to be in deeper trouble given the scale of the data breach.