Korea’s leading cryptocurrency exchange Bithumb will stand trial over the hacking incident in 2017. The prosecution said Tuesday that Bithumb’s loose technical and administrative protection measures incurred losses to users.
The cyber investigation unit of the Seoul Eastern District Prosecutors’ Office said it had indicted Bithumb and its personal information managers without physical detention for violating the Act on Promotion of Information and Communications Network Utilization and Information Protection, etc.
At the time of the hacking incident, personal computers of some Bithumb employees were exposed to malicious programs. As a result, 31,000 cases of customers’ personal information, which had been stored in the relevant PCs, were leaked. Information leaked included customers’ names, phone numbers, emails and cryptocurrency transaction history. Prosecutors believe that hackers used the information to steal customers’ cryptocurrencies worth 7 billion won on 200 occasions.
The prosecution said Bithumb’s storage of customer information in personal computers without encrypting it was in violation of protection measures stipulated in the act. Bithumb’s failure to install security updates that could have prevented and cured malicious programs is a serious offense too, according to the prosecution.
In connection with the extortion of cryptocurrencies, the prosecution insisted, “Bithumb did not act to detect and shutter abnormal connections although such connections had been repeated.” Even if customers reported their hacking damage, Bithumb caused additional damage by failing to take proper protection measures like figuring out reasons and putting up public notices.
Explaining about the prosecution’s indictment, Bithumb said Wednesday that the leakage of personal information and theft of cryptocurrencies were separate. “We took measures to protect customers promptly at the time. We will be sincere in standing trial,” Bithumb added.
In the meantime, the prosecution also indicted two security officers of With Innovation and Hana Tour without detention in violation of the Information and Communications Network Law over the leakage of personal information in 2017. Their companies were indicted without detention on the same charge. /firstname.lastname@example.org
- 사동석 기자