Hyderabad: Notices issued to big tech companies in data leak case


Hyderabad: The Cyberabad police here issued notices to several big companies for manhandling of data resulting in the data of their customers and clients landing illegally in the hands of fraudsters.

The Cyberabad police caught at least three gangs involved in the theft and sale of data of individuals. In the latest case the police arrested a man, Anand Bhardwaj of Haryana for allegedly holding data of 66.7 crore individuals.

The notices were issued to Tech Mahindra, State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Matrix, Axis Bank, Policy Bazaar, Club Mahendra, Facebook, Phonepay and Big Basket.

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DCP (Crimes) Cyberabad Kalmeshwar Shingenavar said the notices are issued because the companies violated the law pertaining to the procedures laid down by the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology that deals with protection of data of their customers and prevention of its misuse.

Bhardwaj was procuring and selling personal and confidential data of 66.9 crore people and organisations in 104 categories across 24 states and 8 metropolitan cities of the country. The accused was found possessing data of students of Byjus and Vedantu organisations. Apart from that, he possessed the data of 1.84 lakh cab users of eight metro cities and data of 4.5 lakh salaried employees of six cities and Gujarat state, the police said.

The accused also held customer data of major organisations like GST (Pan India), RTO (Pan India), Amazon, Netflix, Youtube, Paytm, Phonepe, Big Basket, BookMyShow, Instagram, Zomato, Policy Bazar, Upstox, etc.

“Some of the important data held by the accused includes the data of defence personnel, government employees, PAN card holders, students data of 9th, 10th, 11 & 12th standard, senior citizens. Delhi electricity consumers, D-MAT account holders, mobile numbers of various individuals, NEET students, high net worth individuals, insurance holders, credit card and debit card holders,” the Cyberabad Police maintained.

On March 22, the police arrested a seven member gang allegedly involved in the theft and sale of sensitive data of the government and important organizations, including details of defense personnel as well as the personal and confidential data of about 16.8 crore citizens. The accused persons were found selling more than 140 different categories of information, which include sensitive information such as details of defense personnel and the mobile numbers of citizens and NEET students, among others, the police said.

Seven data brokers were arrested from Delhi and the accused had been operating through three companies (call centers) in Noida and other places. So far it has been found that the accused sold data to at least 100 fraudsters. .

“The data had landed in the wrong hands and fraudsters using it had conned and duped several persons of hard earned money. Three cases were registered in Cybercrime police station and while investigating the cases we found the data of the victims was obtained from the online portals and companies illegally,” said the DCP.

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( With inputs from www.siasat.com )

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