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If you scrape Pastebin for research or even just out of curiosity, it quickly becomes apparent that there is an abundance of compromised data that is uploaded there by unknown malicious actors.

My question is, why is this still done given that there are alternatives that offer better support for covering one's tracks and are a lot less poplar and hence less monitored?

  • Well I suppose the aim being pursued usually is to share and publicize the leaked data right ? Then the more exposure the better. – Anonymous Sep 18 '17 at 18:41
  • Well, I would guess that the aim is often to share it with a select group of individuals rather than publicize it. A list of hacked credentials for example is hardly worth sharing with the whole world, right? – Boblicon Sep 18 '17 at 19:03
  • @Boblicon many times, the goal is precisely to share it. The attackers are actually looking for credit, and the posted credentials are showed as a proof of the compromise. Sometimes there is a motivation to embarrass the target, too. – Ángel Nov 10 '17 at 0:00
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Here are the reasons I know why Pastebin is popular in terms of doxing among Malicious actors :

  • It can handle large text files

  • Easy to use

  • Doesn’t proactively moderate postings

  • Publishing there doesn’t require registration

  • Its heritage is rooted in IRC networks

They might be other reasons I'm not aware of. This SE site community should comment/edit this answer or post a better one if it's the case.

  • 1
    TIL that Pastebin was commonly used with IRC. I can imagine that Github's Gists is also used for leaks and dumps, especially since whenever I browse public Gists with Fasthub on Android, there's hundreds of Russian/Greek(?) Gists from anonymous with links to piracy sites and other malicious sites. Moderation also seems to be a bit light there as well if this is any indication. – MoonRunestar Sep 19 '17 at 14:39

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