Hackers last week were able to breach computer security at the Tomorrowland festival organisers, and steal the data of 64,000 people who signed up for tickets for the 2004 edition. Tomorrowland is one of the world’s biggest dance festivals, held in a park near Boom in Antwerp province and attended by thousands of people from all over the world, some of whom charter planes to come to Belgium and fully book hotels in Antwerp and Brussels.
The festival has branched out as a result of its success, with editions now in Brazil and a winter festival to be held in the Alps in March next year. A spin-off, TomorrowWorld, was held three times in the state of Georgia in the US.
The 2014 edition was special in that it was the first to be held over two weekends in July that year, attracting 360,000 visitors in total – twice as many as in the previous three years and three times as many as 2010. Tomorrowland’s first edition, in 2005, pulled a crowd of a mere 9,000 people.
The hackers have now made off with the details filled in by festival-goers when they applied for tickets online, including names, addresses, age, postcode and gender. Organisers said no sensitive information, such as payment details, was obtained.
However the information that was received could be sufficient for the hackers to use it for identity theft, which in turn is a useful tool for committing fraud.
“The managers of the Paylogic ticketing system noticed some unusual activity on an older system,” spokesperson Debby Wilmsen told De Standaard. “After careful analysis it appeared that an old database from Tomorrowland 2014 was concerned. The server in question was immediately taken offline.”
Tomorrowland then informed the privacy commission, responsible for data protection. Everyone on the 2014 list of ticket-buyers will be informed of the incident by email. Users are advised to change their password for the system immediately.