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LG Uplus CEO apologizes for data breach, vows to triple security budgetBy Jie Ye-eun
Published : Feb. 16, 2023 - 17:52
LG Uplus Chief Executive Officer Hwang Hyeon-sik apologized Thursday over the recent controversy surrounding the company’s data breaches and the internet connection failure caused by cyberattacks, pledging to beef up information security capabilities.
“We sincerely apologize to our customers for the inconvenience caused by the data leakage incident and internet connection failure,” Hwang said in a press conference at the company’s headquarters in Yongsan, central Seoul.
“Taking the recent incidents as series matters, we’ll remind ourselves that all of the company’s businesses start from the customers. … We should have focused more on network security as a telecommunications service provider,” he said.
The CEO’s apology came as the country’s third-largest wireless carrier has been under fire for leaking customers’ data and network service outages several times over the past months.
A total of 290,000 customers’ data had been leaked by a presumed hacking attempt on Jan. 2. The data included customers’ phone numbers, names, addresses, birth dates, e-mail addresses, encoded resident registration numbers and passwords, and universal subscriber identity modules. But financial information was not exposed, according to the company.
The case has been investigated by the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency, the Personal Information Protection Commission and the Korea Internet & Security Agency, but the cause of the data leak remains unknown.
LG Uplus’ network also suffered partial disconnections five times on Jan. 29 and Feb. 4 due to suspected distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. The company is still facing cyberattacks but safely defending them so far, the company said.
With the apology, the chief announced the plan to increase the company’s investment in information security to 100 billion won ($77.8 million) a year, a more than threefold jump from 29.2 billion won in 2021, to prevent the possible recurrence of cyberattacks.
The wireless carrier will form a consultative body to come up with comprehensive support plans for customers harmed by the DDoS attacks-led service malfunctions. For its mobile service users, it will also replace USIM cards and provide alerting service for crank calls free of charge.
“We’re well aware that network and information security are fundamentals to the telecommunications business, which is linked to customer trust,” the CEO said. “Through bone-deep self-reflections, we’ll become a trustworthy company that has the strongest security.”
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