Feeds

Fired Toyota coder trashes systems, steals data

Insider info leak could cause 'irreparable damage'

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

A fired former IT contractor for Toyota's US manufacturing wing has been ordered not to leave the country after allegedly accessing the company's servers, downloading proprietary information, and sabotaging its systems.

The automaker accuses Ibrahimshah Shahulhameed, who was dismissed from his contract programming job on August 23, of logging back into Toyota's systems that same night and spending roughly six hours trashing the place, the Lexington Herald-Leader reports.

Shahulhameed allegedly accessed Toyotasupplier.com, a web portal where Toyota and its suppliers exchange information about upcoming vehicle projects. Although Toyota hasn't said what data it believes he may have stolen, it could include pricing, parts specifications, quality testing, or design information.

"If this information were disseminated to competitors or otherwise made public, it would be highly damaging to Toyota and its suppliers, causing immediate and irreparable damage," Toyota attorney Mindy Barfield wrote in a complaint to the court.

Toyota also claims Shahulhameed altered at least 13 different applications on its servers, including removing security certificates, causing the systems to crash.

"It will take days for Toyota's IT department to determine the full extent of its damage as a result of defendant's efforts to sabotage its system," the company's complaint says.

On Monday, Judge Karen Caldwell of the US District Court in Lexington, Kentucky granted Toyota a restraining order preventing Shahulhameed from leaving the US or sharing any proprietary information he may possess.

A native of India, Shahulhameed had told his Toyota bosses that he planned to return there after losing his contract work.

Toyota spokesman Rick Hesterberg said that so far the company doesn't believe any sensitive information has been leaked to the public or to its competitors, but he declined to say what measures the company planned to take should anything get out.

"It's too early to speculate on what-if's," he said.

However much damage Toyota claims the data leak could potentially cause, however, the court released Shahulhameed on bond of just $2,500, pending trial. That's just over twice the cost of a one-way flight from Lexington to Bombay, assuming he were to leave on Friday. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
George Clooney, WikiLeaks' lawyer wife hand out burner phones to wedding guests
Day 4: 'News'-papers STILL rammed with Clooney nuptials
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
PEAK IPV4? Global IPv6 traffic is growing, DDoS dying, says Akamai
First time the cache network has seen drop in use of 32-bit-wide IP addresses
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.