Sunday, July 27, 2008

Korean Police Investigate Massive Leak of Personal Data

Via The Korean Herald.

Police are investigating the leak of about 9 million items of personal information from the internet, allegedly obtained by a China-based hacker and misused by online Korean moneylenders.

Four private loan brokers in Seoul bought the stolen data for 15 million won ($14,900) from the hacker who allegedly broke into about 2,000 local websites in May 2006 using a computer program called "HDSI 2.0," the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency said.

The suspects also resold the data to other loan businesses and mail-based marketing firms. They had raked in 220 million won from the sales between May 2007 and February 2008, police said.

A total of eight suspects were rounded up after the police crackdown from December 2007-February 2008. Two key suspects fled to China and police are tracing their whereabouts, officials said.

The stolen data includes resident ID numbers, telephone numbers, user IDs and passwords from the websites of six commercial banks, plus 12 private money lenders, two universities and 616 internet shopping malls, they said.

They also made random phone calls to encourage cash-strapped individuals to borrow money from private lenders. They collected fees amounting to 2.5 billion won [roughly US$2.48 million -ferg] from both lenders and borrowers, police said.

More here.

Hat-tip: The Dark Visitor


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