Did Hackers Steal 790 Gigabytes of Data From TikTok?

Did Hackers Steal 790 Gigabytes of Data From TikTok?

A post on a hacker forum this week alleged that hackers had stolen “2.05 billion records of more than 790 gigabytes” from TikTok.


When a major tech company reportedly suffers a security breach, they react in various ways but not usually by denying that the breach happened at all. 

But that’s what took place this week amid reports that TikTok suffered a security incident. 


A post on a hacker forum this week alleged that hackers had stolen “2.05 billion records of more than 790 gigabytes” from TikTok. But the company denied the implication in a statement to the website Bleeping Computer. 

“This is an incorrect claim — our security team investigated this statement and determined that the code in question is completely unrelated to TikTok’s backend source code, which has never been merged with WeChat data,” TikTok said. 

Also this week, CNBC reported that TikTok appears to be “upending” the music industry, with the social media app often making music stars and assisting in the revival of older music. 

“TikTok, owned by China’s ByteDance, is turning the music business on its head by increasingly becoming a hit-making machine,” the CNBC report said. “Artists can go from obscurity to global superstardom, thanks to a viral video that could be posted by a complete stranger. Even Fleetwood Mac’s ’Dreams’ reentered the charts in 2020 after a clip of a man drinking cranberry juice on a skateboard exploded on the app.”

“If a song is going viral on TikTok, and the artist is unsigned, and as a result, it’s getting a million streams on Spotify, the labels are scrambling to sign that song or that artist,” Tatiana Cirisano, a music industry analyst and consultant at Midia Research, told CNBC of the phenomenon. “They’re obsessed with expanding their market share and making sure they don’t lose any market share to independent artists.”

And in the latest story about a “TikTok Challenge” gone wrong, a Kentucky woman’s car has been stolen from outside her home, in what’s been described as a TikTok challenge encouraging users to steal Kias and Hyundais. 

“I called 9-1-1 and they said that there’s a challenge going on,” the woman whose car was stolen told WLKY. “They said there’s been a lot of thefts lately, and there’s really nothing I could’ve done to prevent it. To come and steal someone’s car and they have to figure out a mode of transportation when they already had one, you just came and stole it from them, I think that’s crazy.”

Hyundai has issued a statement. 

“In order to assist customers with earlier model year vehicles without an immobilizer, Hyundai has been working with and will continue to support local police departments to make steering wheel locks available for affected Hyundai owners. Additionally, Hyundai has identified a Firstech / Compustar security kit that targets the method of entry thieves are using to access these vehicles,” the car company said.

Stephen Silver, a technology writer for The National Interest, is a journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.

Image: Reuters.