The NFL has been in the spotlight for many things lately, unfortunately, some of the attention has not been positive. unwanted attention regarding the National Anthem. Between the President, NFL owners and the players expressing their opinions on what anatomical positions a player should be during the playing of the national anthem the conversation has drawn a great deal of media attention. Even though, the initial player who started the discussion, Colin Kaepernick is not playing, the resurgence of the topic along with the strength of the feelings associated with the topic may have possible caused a sympathizer or opportunist to target the NFL players personal information.
While the media attention was focused on the anthem controversy, an unknown hacker(s) discovered an unlocked door inside the NFL players association website. According to cybersecurity company Kromtech Security the hackers discovered an open database sitting on the NFLPA website. The database was an elasticsearch based on Lucene open source technology and contained Bob Diachenko of Kromtech said the data was sitting wide open for anyone with the link to the database (Brewster, October 2017).
Colin Kaepernick and a thousand other players, mostly free agents data were compromised. The hacker who gained access to data may cause further disruption to the personal lives of the 1200 plus free agents It’s unsure whether Kaepernick haters were looking for a way to further show their disdain for his display of protest or a lucky thief wandered by an open door with the players information lying around unsecured for the taking.
Unfortunately, for him and the other players the hackers now have access to all their personal information. The National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) confirmed players home addresses, cell phone numbers, email address, colleges, dates of birth and agent fees were part of the exposed data (Brewster, October 2017). In the same confirmation, the NFLPA assured no players social security numbers or financial data was included in the breach.
By all appearances, it doesn’t appear the hackers are seeking to gain wealth from the attack, The amount requested to the NFL to release the files was a whopping 0.1 bitcoins which is equal to $427 dollars, as of this writing it is unknown whether the NFL has paid the ransom.