July 6, 2022

Japanese travel agency ordered to investigate data breach affecting 7.93 million people


The Japan Tourism Agency ordered JTB Corp on Wednesday. to file a report and take preventive action by June 24 after the leading travel agency said it feared personal information on 7.93 million people had been leaked through unauthorized access to its server.

The information includes the names, addresses, email addresses and passport numbers of customers. About 4,300 passport numbers that may have been leaked are still valid, JTB said on Tuesday. No misuse of the data has been confirmed so far, the agency said.

The Metropolitan Police Department began investigating the case on Tuesday, investigative sources said.

JTB said that i.JTB Corp., one of its group companies, was apparently attacked when an employee opened a virus-infected email file that gained access to customer information.

“I apologize for causing problems and concerns to our customers and others concerned,” JTB President Hiroyuki Takahashi said at a press conference.

The data disclosed may include information about customers who have used the online travel reservation services offered by the mobile operator NTT Docomo Inc.

With a workforce of around 26,000 people, JTB is the leading travel agency in Japan. It posted a group’s net profit of 12.58 billion yen on sales of 1.34 trillion yen last year, benefiting from the increase in the number of foreign travelers to Japan, especially from China.

Japanese companies are redoubling their efforts to prevent unauthorized access to servers and the leakage of information through virus infections. Yahoo Japan Corp. and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. also suffered data breaches.

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