Hackers can attack any company, anywhere in the world. It is a scary fact to consider, one that Japan Airlines has just learned the hard way. According to reports, Japan Airlines has announced that it was the target of hackers, and it’s believed that nearly 750,000 customers have their information stored on the airline’s system.
Japan Airlines confirmed the attack on Sept. 29, saying that it had found evidence to suggest that unauthorized people accessed its Customer Information Management System. The carrier believes that the hackers gained access to the system via a virus that was uploaded to one of its computer terminals, which are set up on a network. Japan Airlines said that the personal data of all of its JA Mileage Bank passengers are stored in this system.
The information that was stolen has already been leaked, including passengers’ birth dates, addresses, email addresses, genders and places of work. The airline did say that there is no indication at this time that credit card numbers or passwords were stolen. However, it’s always a good idea to change passwords after an event like this occurs.
Japan Airlines said that the leak was first brought to its attention on September 19 when accessing consumer information on the system responded too slowly. This led to an investigation into the system. Although nearly 750,000 people have their information stored on this system, it’s believed that only around 190,000 actually had their information stolen. Japan Airlines also found out that nearly 21,000 pieces of user data were sent to some kind of external server. So far, the company has not been able to identify this mystery server, but it’s known that the server is located someplace in Hong Kong.
While talking about the hacking, Japan Airlines said in a statement that it’s discussing all of the necessary measures to block the computers that have access to its affected system. Based on the information that was obtained during the investigation, it believes that it can take countermeasures. For now, consumers should be proactive, changing their passwords and taking steps to keep their information safe.
This may be the first time that Japan Airlines has had its system hacked, but it’s not the first time that a Japanese airline has been attacked. In March, All Nippon Airways saw 11 different cases in which flight mileage credit was exchanged for Apple iTunes gift cards. This was done without the users’ authorization. All Nippon Airways said, however, that no personal data from the consumers were stolen.