Login details for Fortnite, Netflix and Uber accounts are selling for as little as £8 on illicit online markets, according to dark web researchers.

The latest figures come from the first annual update of the Dark Web Market Price Index, compiled by researchers at VPN site Top10VPN.com.

A series of high-profile data breaches has contributed to a thriving online black market, with high profile data breaches involving the likes of British Airways and Mariott Hotels seeing logins inundate the dark web – a hidden section of the internet that is only accessible using specialist software.

“This is a highly – and understandably – worrying situation for customers who might have been caught in hacks,” said Simon Migliano, head of research at Top10VPN.com.

“Storing payment information across a whole range of online accounts – even social media – is now par for the course for the majority of consumers as it’s simply so convenient. The downside is that if a fraudster gains access to one account they then, essentially, have the keys to the kingdom.”

By reviewing tens of thousands of listings across five popular dark web markets, the researchers found that the cost of individual accounts had generally increased over the last 12 months.

The price for Netflix accounts (£8.19) and Uber accounts (£7.61), for example, have risen by 37 per cent and 52 per cent respectively since last year.

Fortnite has also seen a huge increase from cyber criminals, following the video game’s explosion in popularity since its launch in 2017.

In September, researchers at security firm Digital Shadows discovered that mentions of the game across dark web sites had almost doubled in the preceding six months.

The latest research found that Fortnite accounts were now among the most desirable on the dark web, as despite being free to play, hacked accounts could include valuable in-game items.

“What this all serves to underline is how web users need to remain constantly vigilant as identity thieves can access personal details in a variety of ways,” Mr Migliano said.

“As well as using unique passwords, encrypting connections to WiFi hotspots with a VPN is a must. It’s otherwise all too easy for hackers to swipe sensitive data transmitted via these public networks.”

~theIndependent