Breach, Cloud Security, Threat Management, Data Security, Malware, Network Security, Ransomware

Tarte Cosmetics breach exposes nearly 2 million customers

Here's one case where you might say the crime was worse than the cover-up.

Make-up company Tarte Cosmetics exposed the personal information of nearly 2 million online customers after two of its online MongoDB databases were misconfigured for public access, according to researchers from MacKeeper's Kromtech Security Center.

Even worse, a known cybercriminal group dropped a ransom note into one of the unsecured databases, strongly suggesting the malicious actors discovered, observed and perhaps stole the data. The note, from the ransomware group CRU3LTY, demands 0.2 bitcoins for recovering the database once its data is deleted or encrypted. However, no such attack has taken place.

Online shoppers who purchased from Tarte over a 10-year time span from 2008-2017 are potentially impacted. In an Oct. 23 blog post, Kromtech notes that the compromised data includes names, addresses, emails, and purchase histories, plus the last four digits of their credit card numbers.

Kromtech states that on Oct. 20, after two days of attempting to contact the company, Tarte secured the two databases -- collectively 8.7 GB in size -- even though the researchers reportedly never received an official response.

SC Media has reached out to Tarte for comment.

Bradley Barth

As director of community content at CyberRisk Alliance, Bradley Barth develops content for SC Media online conferences and events, as well as video/multimedia projects. For nearly six years, he wrote and reported for SC Media as deputy editor and, before that, senior reporter. He was previously a program executive with the tech-focused PR firm Voxus. Past journalistic experience includes stints as business editor at Executive Technology, a staff writer at New York Sportscene and a freelance journalist covering travel and entertainment. In his spare time, Bradley also writes screenplays.

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