Misconfigured cloud configurations have often resulted in a leak of sensitive data, creating an embarrassing situation for the organization owning the data. In the latest incident, Joomla’s internal team made this blunder, exposing the details of their registered users.
Joomla’s data exposed
- In June 2020, a member of the Joomla Resources Directory (JRD) team had exposed a full backup of their website (resources.joomla[.]org) on an Amazon Web Services S3 bucket.
- The backup file was not encrypted and contained the details of 2,700 users, who had created their profiles on the JRD website.
- Besides urging all users to change their passwords, Joomla also removed all the super-user accounts and disabled all the user accounts that did not log in after January 1, 2019.
Data leak - a prominent side-effect of cloud hosting
This incident is just one case in a series of such mishappenings since the beginning of the cloud era. Here are some recent incidents when organizations faced similar threats due to misconfiguration issues in the cloud.
- In May 2020, Natura, Brazil's largest cosmetics company, left two Amazon-hosted servers exposed with 272 GB and 1.3 TB of data including more than 192 million records.
- In April 2020, the data of about 14 million users of the popular Key Ring app were left exposed on the internet due to a misconfigured AWS S3 bucket, that carried 44 million records, including copies of customer’s IDs, driver licenses, government IDs, medical insurance cards, and more.
Preventing Cloud-based misconfigurations
To avoid any leakage of data due to misconfigurations, it is always recommended to strictly follow the recommended guidelines and best practices. Users should enable file-level activity logs for all cloud-hosted resources, and use automated tools to check for exposure or loopholes in the data hosted on the cloud.