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RealTime IT News

Unknown Hacker Offers Czech Savings Bank Data via Net

Czech police are investigating the case of a hacker who is offering Internet access to the complete database of client transactions data of the largest Czech savings bank Ceska sporitelna.

Although the manhunt began September 13, the police have yet to locate the offender.

Certain Czech companies from various industries obtained the anonymous offer. Its author claims to have vital data -- among others name, address and complete list of transactions for any given period -- about the more than 2.5 million of clients of Ceska sporitelna. Details from the accounts of several randomly selected clients were enclosed as the evidence, and the sample information was confirmed by the clients themselves.

The anonymous hacker also published his e-mail address, sporoziro@yahoo.com, that he offers for communication with media as well as for "business offers."

Ceska sporitelna conceded that privacy of its clients is in serious threat, but denied that deposits could by in any danger. However, the reputation of the bank was damaged.

Some sources close to the police say that the attack might primarily be assigned to hurt the bank and lower its market capitalization; Ceska sporitelna is currently in the final phase of privatization.

Police also assumes the offender may be an insider at the bank. This theory is backed by representatives of the IT companies that supplied Ceska sporitelna with its database system, among them Microsoft and IBM.

Some in the Internet industry fear that the case might be used by politicians as argument for enforcing the more restrictive Internet access laws. In the present, Czech Internet laws are quite liberal, but are often vaguely stated.