Security

Millions of Swedish Health Hotline Calls Exposed Online in a Massive Case of Data Breach

About 2.7 million conversations totaling 170,000 hours were available online

Data breach is becoming quite a nightmare for a lot of people with new breaches coming every now and then. In a recent data breach, millions of calls that were made by the Swedish residents have been exposed online. The Swedes were seeking medical advice through a national health telephone service in order to know more about symptoms and medications.

According to reports, about 2.7 million conversations amounting to more than 170,000 hours are available online. The data in the conversation is extremely private with people talking about their diseases, symptoms, illness, and giving out their social security numbers. This breach has left the Swedish authorities bewildered as they investigate the whole thing.

Data of the calls dates back to 2013 and is available for anyone to download and listen. Security expert Mikko Hypponen says that the audio calls were saved as Wav files. These files were left open on an unsecured server. This allowed any person to listen or download the 2.7 million conversations of the Swedish people. No encryption or authentication was required to crack the data making it easily available on the internet.

Journalists who listened to the audio calls in order to verify the security breach said that 57,000 phone numbers appeared in the database. The audio files now have been taken down and are no longer accessible as the authorities look to investigate the whole issue. The data breach is said to be the worst data breach in recent times for Sweden.

Swedish National Health Service Hotline

Sweden operates a national health advice line 1177 which is run by Swedish firm Medhelp. The firm then subcontracts out-of-hour calls to Medicall. The conversations breached are mostly related to the calls that were made out of the normal hours. Thus raising concerns over the security measures that Medicall had taken in order to ensure the privacy of the callers.


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