HomeNewsWELEAKINFO.COM has been Seized by the FBI: A Blow to Personal Data...

WELEAKINFO.COM has been Seized by the FBI: A Blow to Personal Data Marketplaces

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In collaboration with international law enforcement agencies, on January 15th, 2020, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) seized the domain name weleakinfo.com.

This website dubbed the “World's Fastest and Largest Data Breach Search Engine,” offered a disturbing service: access to billions of stolen personal records for a subscription fee.

The seizure marked a significant victory in the fight against cybercrime, particularly the illegal trade in personal data. This article delves into the details of weleakinfo.com, the implications of its closure, and the ongoing battle against data breaches.

A Marketplace for Stolen Data

Weleakinfo.com operates as a search engine specifically designed to crawl the dark web, which is the hidden corners of the internet that are not indexed by traditional search engines.

Cybercriminals often trade stolen data, including usernames, passwords, email addresses, phone numbers, and even financial information. weleakinfo.com indexed this stolen information, making it readily searchable for a subscription fee as low as $2 per day.

The Scope of the Problem

The scale of weleakinfo.com's operation was staggering. Authorities estimated the website had indexed over 12 billion records from over 10,000 data breaches. This vast database offered a treasure trove for malicious actors, potentially enabling them to commit:

  • Identity Theft: Criminals could use stolen information to open fraudulent accounts, steal money, or damage someone's credit score.
  • Targeted Scams: With access to email addresses and personal details, scammers could launch personalized phishing attacks with a higher chance of success.
  • Account Takeover: Stolen usernames and passwords could be used to gain unauthorized access to victims' online accounts, like email or social media.

READ ALSO: How IT Professionals Can Monitor Remote Employees’ PCs Without Violating Privacy Laws

The Takedown and Its Impact

The FBI's seizure of weleakinfo.com sent a solid message to cybercriminals: trafficking in stolen data will not be tolerated.

The website's closure disrupted a significant marketplace for personal information, potentially hindering the activities of identity thieves and other malicious actors. Additionally, the takedown served as a deterrent, discouraging others from engaging in similar activities.

Beyond WELEAKINFO.COM: The Ongoing Challenge

While the closure of weleakinfo.com was a positive step, it's essential to recognize it's not a definitive solution.

Data breaches remain a persistent threat in today's digital world. Millions of records are compromised yearly, and new data marketplaces can emerge on the dark web.

Here's a glimpse into the ongoing challenges:

  • Evolving Tactics: Cybercriminals are constantly devising new methods to breach data. Companies and organizations need to stay vigilant and invest in robust cybersecurity measures.
  • International Cooperation: Data breaches often transcend geographical boundaries. Effective law enforcement requires international cooperation to track cybercriminals and disrupt their operations.
  • Public Awareness: Educating individuals about online safety practices and the risks associated with data breaches is crucial. Implementing solid passwords, practicing caution with suspicious emails, and being mindful of the information shared online can significantly enhance personal security.

READ ALSO: 5 Common Online Scam Tactics

The Path Forward

The weleakinfo.com takedown highlights the importance of a multi-pronged approach in combating the illegal trade in personal data. Efforts should focus on:

  • Strengthening Cybersecurity: Organizations must prioritize robust security measures to prevent data breaches at the source.
  • Law Enforcement Collaboration: International cooperation among law enforcement agencies is essential to track down cybercriminals and dismantle their operations.
  • Public Education: Raising public awareness about online safety practices empowers individuals to protect their personal information.

FAQs: Website Seizures, FBI's Role, and Data Breaches

What websites have been seized by the FBI?

The FBI and international partners have seized numerous websites that were involved in illegal activities. Some notable examples include:

  • weleakinfo.com (2020): A search engine for stolen personal data.
  • Silk Road (2013): A dark web marketplace for illegal goods and services.
  • PlayPen (2015): A child exploitation website.

What does it mean when a website has been seized?

When the FBI seizes a website, it controls the domain name and web server. This means visitors attempting to access the website will encounter a message indicating the seizure and potential legal ramifications. The seized website's content might be preserved as evidence for ongoing investigations.

READ ALSO: 5 Cybersecurity Tips To Protect Your Digital Assets As A Business

Does the FBI monitor websites?

As part of its mission to combat cybercrime, the FBI has the authority to investigate online activities. This may involve monitoring website traffic or content related to suspected criminal activity. However, there are specific legal guidelines and procedures regarding online surveillance.

Does the FBI monitor Instagram?

Under specific legal warrants or court orders, the FBI can access user data from social media platforms like Instagram if tied to a criminal investigation. Social media companies have specific privacy policies outlining data collection and user information requests from law enforcement.

What is the meaning of the word FBI?

FBI stands for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the primary investigative arm of the United States Department of Justice. Their responsibilities include investigating federal crimes, combating terrorism, and protecting national security.

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Did the FBI seize 13 more domains linked to DDoS for hire services?

Yes, in May 2023, the FBI, as part of their ongoing Operation PowerOFF, seized 13 internet domains associated with “booter” services that facilitate DDoS (Distributed Denial-of-Service) attacks. These websites offered tools for overwhelming targeted servers with unwanted traffic, potentially disrupting online services.


The seizure of weleakinfo.com represents a significant victory in the fight against cybercrime. However, the battle against data breaches and the illegal trade in personal information is far from over.

By implementing robust cybersecurity measures, fostering international collaboration among law enforcement agencies, and educating the public about online safety, we can create a safer digital environment for all.

Note: This was initially published in January 2020 but has been updated for freshness and accuracy.


About the Author:

john raymond
Writer at SecureBlitz

John Raymond is a cybersecurity content writer, with over 5 years of experience in the technology industry. He is passionate about staying up-to-date with the latest trends and developments in the field of cybersecurity, and is an avid researcher and writer. He has written numerous articles on topics of cybersecurity, privacy, and digital security, and is committed to providing valuable and helpful information to the public.

Editor at SecureBlitz | Website

Christian Schmitz is a professional journalist and editor at SecureBlitz.com. He has a keen eye for the ever-changing cybersecurity industry and is passionate about spreading awareness of the industry's latest trends. Before joining SecureBlitz, Christian worked as a journalist for a local community newspaper in Nuremberg. Through his years of experience, Christian has developed a sharp eye for detail, an acute understanding of the cybersecurity industry, and an unwavering commitment to delivering accurate and up-to-date information.


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