SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A massive theft of customer data from three major credit card firms in South Korea has shown security lapses in the financial industry.

First revealed by prosecutors, the theft of information linked to 80 million credit cards such as salaries, monthly card usage, credit rating and card numbers has sparked widespread public concern. Cardholders are flocking to bank branches and overloading call centers and service websites to find out if their information was stolen.

Local media said the theft may have affected most credit card holders in a country of 50 million people. Prosecutors and the financial regulator said no financial losses have been reported.

Financial Services Commission Chairman Shin Je-yoon said in a statement Monday that the credit card companies had failed to ensure adequate security.

The chief financial regulator urged the companies to be vigilant about data theft not only by hackers but also by employees and contractors. South Korean financial firms, media companies and governments have fallen victim to cyberattacks in the past with local authorities blaming North Korea as a culprit in some cases.

But the latest data breach exposed how confidential customer data was poorly managed by financial firms.

Prosecutors said last week that an employee of Korea Credit Bureau, a contractor, stole the data beginning 2012 by copying data to a USB device.

Prosecutors said the worker, who was responsible for the development of new software to detect credit card fraud, sold the data to a loans company.

The stolen data from Lotte Card and the credit card units of KB Financial Group and NongHyup Bank was unencrypted, according to Cho Sung-mok, a director at the Financial Supervisory Service.

He said the companies were unaware of the theft until prosecutors began an investigation.

NongHyup Bank's card division did not notice the data breach for more than a year while KB was unaware for over six months.

Chiefs at credit card firms apologized and authorities have vowed to beef up security measures.

About News.net

Publishing Services International Limited (PSIL) is the publisher and operator of a worldwide network of online news sites dedicated to delivering fair, accurate and relevant reporting from a variety of the world’s most trusted sources – from the biggest cities to the smallest towns.

We deliver positive and powerful messages to our readers, providing up‑to‑the‑second news that matters to the individual.

Our promise is to serve communities and individuals worldwide, delivering information that hasn’t always been available to them. We will give them back a voice – a voice that’s empowering because it is theirs – and provide a platform to communicate between themselves and the world.

We believe people are not just generic demographics; they are individuals with their own preferences and curiosities. We are about understanding these individuals, listening to them, and serving them.

We are the new pioneering spirit of news – we’re not talking to everyone, we’re talking with every one.

If you want your news, your voice, your way, on your time – we’ve got news for you.

 

FAQs

Email

If you have any questions or concerns please email us on support@news.net

Phone

  • Australia, Toll Free 1-800-983-421
  • Hong Kong, Toll Free 800-906-187
  • Singapore, Toll Free 800-852-3871
  • USA/Canada, Toll Free 1-800-830-4132

Advertise With Us

Interested in being awesome?
Contact us by email or phone.

Cancel