Peer-to-peer networks can be useful to increase the rate and volume of information exchange. However, this also has its drawbacks as two security researchers demonstrated at the ShmooCon conference over the weekend.
Larry Pesce and Mick Douglas took a look at the information individuals send via P2P applications and found even the most sensitive information could be shared.
The two researchers were able to intercept highly personal data that could be easily used by cyber criminals. The information included Social Security numbers, tax documents, driver licenses, passports, a last will and testament and even information on an individual living in secret because he is at risk of being killed by terrorists.
The researchers found much of the information by typing in relatively benign search terms like “passport” and “doctor.”