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Digital encryption should be a priority for anyone looking to safeguard their data, given how cheap personal information is sold in dark web marketplaces, according to a recent study.

That’s the advice from Miklos Zoltan, the CEO and founder of the cybersecurity and data specialist Privacy Affairs, whose experts recently reviewed the offerings on the dark web, a hidden collective of internet sites only accessible by a specialized web browser.

The Dark Web Price Index 2022, drawn from data scanning dark web marketplaces, forums, and websites, showed criminals could acquire credit card details and online banking login information for as little as $50. The research revealed that hackers on dark web forums sell stolen data, such as:

  • Credit card details and associated information. Cost between $17-$120;
  • Online banking login information: $65;
  • Hacked Facebook account: $45;
  • Cloned VISA with PIN: $20;
  • Stolen PayPal account details, minimum $1,000 balances: $20;
  • Hacked web and entertainment services, from Uber to Netflix: Up to $40;
  • A full range of documents and account details allowing identity theft can be obtained for $1,010.

Over 9,000 vendors are selling fake IDs and credit cards, while more bogus credit card data, personal information, and documents were sold in 2022 than in 2021, the experts at Privacy Affairs found. August 2022 alone saw 4.5 million credit cards up for sale.

“The digital world provides greater opportunities for hackers, scammers and fraudsters to take advantage of lax personal security online,” Zoltan said. “The sheer volume of sales on the dark web and how cheap information should be a major concern. Everyone should be taking more precautions to protect their digital footprint.”