Hackers in South Korea arrested after breach of hotel app

June 1 (UPI) — Hackers suspected of breaching a popular South Korean mobile app and stealing the personal data of more than 990,000 users have been arrested, local police say.

South Korean television network YTN reported Thursday the hotel and guesthouse reservation app “Good Choice” was hacked in March by a group that operated in the country, as well as in China.

Data stolen from company servers include the names and contact information of app users, as well as records of past reservations.

The arrests, however, have not put an end to concerns the system is still compromised.

A Good Choice representative said it is “difficult to know right away” the extent of the damage, according to YTN.

The hackers also threatened the firm with a data dump that would release customer information on public servers while demanding a ransom.

When the South Korean company refused to comply with threats, personal data of the app users were uploaded to social networks.

Hackers also sent text messages to app users, threatening to divulge information on their past hotel reservations, unless they remitted funds to the group.

One user who received a text said the content of the message was casually cruel. The hackers would ask whether the user enjoyed staying at a past hotel, while demanding a ransom for the stolen data.

Jeong Seok-hwa, a police officer overseeing the investigations, said the hackers took advantage of flaws in the company’s homepage, accessed the database by acquiring site administrator privileges, then extracted the personal information of users.

App users have suggested filing a class-action lawsuit against the company for not managing their data more securely, according to the report.


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