Australia to alter privacy law after Optus faces massive data breach
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On September 26, the Australian government approved plans to crack down on telco Optus following a massive data breach. Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in his recent statement announced plans to make some changes to privacy policies to help banks take the right step against cybercrime.
According to a report last week, Australian telecommunications company Optus revealed that the personal information of more than 10 million users has been compromised. However, according to Optus, the payment information and account passwords were safe, the names and addresses of certain customers, the driver’s IDs and passport numbers had been made public.
The personal data of up to 10 million customers, about 40 percent of the population, has been compromised by hackers, Singapore Telecoms Ltd-owned Optus reports. Optus stressed that payment details and account passwords remained secure, but some customers have had their home addresses, driver’s license and passport numbers exposed.
The top telecom company revealed that it had notified those whose license or passport details had been hacked. In addition to this, Optus offers free credit monitoring and identity protection for the most affected consumers for a year through the credit bureau Equifax.
In addition, Optus has yet to reveal how the data breach occurred. According to a company source, the attacker’s IP address appeared to roam around Europe. According to a local report, an unnamed person had asked for $1 million cryptocurrencies in exchange for information on the online forum.
Australia’s Prime Minister considers the situation a “big wake-up call”
In response to one of the country’s most devastating data breaches, the country’s prime minister refers to the situation as a “big wake-up call” for the private sector. In addition to this, Prime Minister Albanese also admitted that certain government officials and criminal groups are seeking access to people’s information.
Speaking on radio station, 4BC, Prime Minister Albanese said: “We want to make sure… A that we change some of the privacy regulations out there so that if people are caught like this, the banks can be notified, so they can also protect their customers.”