KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 15 ― The habitual sharing of private information online among Malaysians is one of the key contributors to personal data theft, Communications and Multimedia Deputy Minister Datuk Seri Jailani Johari said today.
Speaking in the Dewan Rakyat, Jailani noted that his ministry found many Malaysians tended to divulge too much personal information, including stating their exact locations and posting personal family details, on the internet, which made it easier for people to assume their identities.
“It comes back to the main question: from our checks, the main problem we found is the attitude of Malaysians who love sharing personal data, and it is also because of carelessness in data usage.
“So we as the consumers, we have to be careful because we have a penchant for sharing, like our favourite locations, personal family details and all that.
“This is what I stressed on earlier. We, as the data subject, or we as individuals, we should not overshare,” he said.
He also advised Malaysians to set alpha-binary passwords to prevent hacking.
Last month, tech news portal Lowyat.net reported network widespread security breaches in several Malaysian telecommunications companies and medical groups, leading to the theft of some 46.2 million mobile phone numbers.
According to Lowyat, the leak included postpaid and prepaid numbers, customer addresses as well as sim card details from major telecommunication operators including Celcom, Maxis, DiGi, Tunetalk, Redtone and Altel.
Some of the affected companies later said they have beefed up their cyber security.
The Communications and Multimedia Ministry also said on November 1 that it has narrowed down the possible suspects behind the theft and attempted sale of the information.