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Data theft syndicate snared

Publish date: 14 June 2017
Issue Number: 1687
Diary: Legalbrief eLaw
Category: Cybercrime

Chinese authorities have infiltrated a private data-stealing syndicate, detaining 20 Apple employees. Police did not specify whether the data belonged to Chinese or foreign Apple customers. A report on the site notes that police say the personal data of iPhone customers is highly prized on China’s black market due to the belief that Apple customers are more likely to be wealthy. Police say the employees stole peoples’ personal data from Apple’s internal system and sold it to criminals on the black market. Of the 22 suspects detained by police in the sting, 20 were Apple employees who allegedly used the company’s internal computer system to gather users’ names, phone numbers, Apple IDs, and other data, which they sold as part of a scam worth more than $10m. On 1 June, China introduced changes which make it harder for companies to avoid punishment in cases like this. The change was met with concern from some foreign companies which now face the potential of fines and other punishment by regulators unless they can prove their systems weren’t to blame for leaks.

Full report on the site