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Leeds cyber leaders launch data breach early warning system DarkInvader

Anthony Harvey, Andrew Mason, Robin Hill and Gavin Watson of DarkInvader

The Yorkshire-based founders of Pentest People and RapidSpike have launched a system which uses the dark web and hacker forums to provide early warnings of data breaches.

DarkInvader, which was founded by Andrew Mason and Robin Hill alongside technical director Gavin Watson and sales director Anthony Harvey, finds caches of stolen data associated with users’ organisations so they can respond more quickly.

Hackers often spend time on networks for long periods to increase their access privileges without alerting organisations, so DarkInvader scans hundreds of thousands of illicit marketplaces and dark web pages to find key pieces of information about an organisation – including card data, passport numbers, healthcare records, and more.

DarkInvader’s cyber research also manually monitor hacker forums to find discussions about leaks. If a breach is confirmed it provides a risk report to the affected organisation and resolution advice.

“Organisations often don’t realise they’ve been hacked until we tell them that their data is being offered for sale on forums and secret websites that are not easily accessible to the general public,” said DarkInvader’s Co-founder, Andrew Mason. 

“Our combination of technology and human research allows us to identify threats earlier than standard dark web automation tools.”

Technical Director, Gavin Watson, added: “Even with robust cyber defences in place, a brand new web vulnerability, an unpatched server, or a misconfigured device can create a small chink in an organisation’s armour that gets exploited by determined hackers.

“Like a river pollution alarm alerting a factory that it’s leaking chemicals, if company records are found on the dark web this cannot be ignored.”


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