Two arrested in Softbank data leak probe

Suspected extortionists get collars felt

Two men have been arrested amid allegations that they were involved in a bid to extort billions of Yen from Japanese outfit Softbank Corp. Yutaka Tomiyasu (24) and Takuya Mori (35) were arrested at the weekend in connection with the leak of confidential information concerning Internet users earlier this year.

Some 4.6m customers of Japanese broadband outfit Yahoo! BB - which is run by Softbank and Yahoo! - had their personal details compromised although no credit or security information such as credit card numbers, passwords or records was made public.

The Daily Yomiuri reports that Tomiyasu allegedly hacked into Softbank's database and copied the data after obtaining a password from a former Softbank worker. Tomiyasu then hooked up with a right-wing group to extort up to 2bn Yen (£10m) from Softbank, reported the paper.

Earlier this month three people in Japan filed a lawsuit at the Osaka District Court seeking damages of 100,000 yen (£500) each for the security breach. Softbank had agreed to pay 500 Yen (about £2.50) to each of the 4.6m people hit by the leak. ®

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