Security Newsletter
24 August 2020
Former Uber Security Chief Charged Over Covering Up 2016 Data Breach
The federal prosecutors in the United States have charged Uber's former chief security officer, Joe Sullivan, for covering up a massive data breach that the ride-hailing company suffered in 2016. According to the press release published by the U.S. Department of Justice, Sullivan "took deliberate steps to conceal, deflect, and mislead the Federal Trade Commission about the breach" that also involved paying hackers $100,000 ransom to keep the incident secret.
The 2016 Uber's data breach exposed names, email addresses, phone numbers of 57 million Uber riders and drivers, and driver license numbers of around 600,000 drivers. The company revealed this information to the public almost a year later in 2017, immediately after Sullivan left his job at Uber in November. Later it was reported that two hackers, Brandon Charles Glover of Florida and Vasile Mereacre of Toronto, were behind the incident to whom Sullivan approved paying money in exchange for promises to delete data of customers they had stolen.
In 2018, British and Dutch data protection regulators also fined Uber with $1.1 million for failing to protect its customers' personal information during a 2016 cyber attack. Now, if Sullivan found guilty of cover-up charges, he could face up to eight years in prison, as well as potential fines of up to $500,000.
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Marriott Faces Another Data Breach Lawsuit
Marriott faces another lawsuit, filed in Britain, over the hotel giant experiencing one of the worst data breaches in history. The breach of the Starwood guest reservation system ran from July 2014 to September 2018 - Marriott acquired Starwood in 2016 - and exposed personal information for approximately 339 million customers worldwide. The breach led the ICO - Britain's privacy watchdog - to propose in July 2019 that Marriott be fined £99 million ($131 million) under the EU's General Data Protection Regulation.
"I have filed a data breach group action in the High Court of England and Wales against Marriott International," Bryant says in a Wednesday LinkedIn post. "The action seeks compensation on behalf of millions of hotel guests who made reservations at hotel brands within the Starwood group. This action follows the data breach of hundreds of millions of guest records between July 2014 and September 2018." Marriott already faces class action lawsuits filed in other countries, including lawsuits in Canada. In the United States, a judge combined 11 class action lawsuits into a single one in early 2019. In February, a judge ruled that the lawsuit against Marriott should proceed.
The full amount of damages that Marriott potentially faces is not clear; it will be up to the court to set the per capita sum - should the case go ahead - based on evidence submitted by the hotel chain. In the meantime, British Airways - owned by IAG, for International Airlines Group - also is facing a lawsuit, which was launched in September 2018 by SPG Law, the U.K. branch of U.S. law giant Sanders Phillips Grossman. SPG Law said it was seeking £500 million ($661 million) via its group action. It's not clear what level of compensation victims might receive, although various attorneys have suggested it could be anywhere from £3,000 ($4,000) to £6,000 ($8,000) per victim, or in cases of extreme impact, up to £16,000 ($21,500). Whether any such penalty levels would be approved, however, remains for the court to decide.
Read More on BankInfoSecurity
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Kindred Group in brief
Kindred is one of the largest online gambling companies in the world with a diverse team of 1,600 people serving over 26 million customers across Europe, Australia and the US. We offer pre-game and live Sports betting, Poker, Casino and Games through 11 brands across our markets. We are committed to offer our customers the best deal and user experience possible, while ensuring a safe and fair gambling environment. Kindred is a pioneer in the online gambling industry and is an innovation driven company that builds on trust.
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