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News Article

LinkedIn Denies Leak of 700 Million User Profiles

By Andrea Villar | Thu, 07/01/2021 - 11:53

Following reports that a data breach exposed 700 million LinkedIn user profiles, the business networking company was quick to deny the accusation. LinkedIn noted that the data recently made available for sale online was “scraped” from the platform, as well as from other websites, reported the company earlier in its ‘April 2021 Scraping Update.’ “Our teams have investigated a set of alleged LinkedIn data that has been posted for sale. We want to be clear that this is not a data breach, and no private LinkedIn member data was exposed,” the company said in a statement. The alleged leaked information includes users’ physical addresses, phone numbers, inferred salaries and geolocation records, first reported Restore Privacy.

“Our initial investigation has found that this data was scraped from LinkedIn and various other websites and includes the same data reported earlier this year in our April 2021 scraping update. Members trust LinkedIn with their data, and any misuse of our members’ data, such as scraping, violates LinkedIn’s terms of service. When anyone tries to take member data and use it for purposes LinkedIn and our members have not agreed to, we work to stop them and hold them accountable,” claimed the company.

As of June 29, LinkedIn reported 756 million users, meaning that the likely breach would have exposed 92 percent of its user base. In Latin America, the network has over 114 million active users. By January this year, Mexico was the second-largest Latin American country with the highest number of LinkedIn users. Men accounted for almost 58 percent of all members in the country, while around 42 percent of the social network's users were women, according to Statista.

This is not the first time that LinkedIn's security has been breached, exposing user information. Back in April, the California-based company suffered a similar data breach that affected 500 million of its users’ accounts. However, it argued then, the information was an “aggregation of data from a number of websites and companies” and only included publicly visible user information from the site.

Andrea Villar Andrea Villar Journalist and Industry Analyst