A massive data theft from e-commerce company Digital River has led investigators to hackers in India, and a 20-year-old man in New York who tried to sell information to a Colorado marketing firm for half a million dollars.
The company obtained a secret court order last month to block Eric Porat of Brooklyn from selling, destroying, altering or distributing stolen data on nearly 200,000 people. Digital River suspects the information was stolen by hackers in New Delhi with insider help. Porat said he got the information from India, but won’t say how or from whom. Noted in a court filing, Porat who lives with his parents, claimed to be offering names, e-mail addresses, websites, company names and unique identification numbers for 198,398 individuals to the highest bidder. Porat claimed that he got the data from a former consultant for Digital River, who captured it during an enhancement of the DirectTrack data system when security systems were taken down temporarily. It is suspected that he may have hacked the Indian hackers’ systems in order to get the information.
The data was originally gathered by companies that offer “affiliated marketing” programs. The affiliates get paid when consumers buy something, make an inquiry or provide a sales lead. Digital River filed a lawsuit under seal on May 13th listing Porat and his company Affiliads LLC, as defendants, demanded to know how they had obtained the firm’s data, and what they’ve done with it.