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MODA investigates alleged Eslite bookstore data leak

Reporter Jamie Lin Pinzon
Release time:2023/05/16 16:29
Last update time:2023/05/16 16:34
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TAIPEI (TVBS News) — The Ministry of Digital Affairs (MODA) initiated an administrative investigation on Tuesday into the alleged customer data leak at the Eslite bookstore amid concerns about its connection to suspected Chinese propagandists. The probe, conducted with the expertise of IT specialists, aims to shed light on an incident that has sparked national attention.

Cynthia Yang, an Eslite customer, revealed details during a press conference held on Sunday in conjunction with the Taiwan Statebuilding Party (TSP). Yang recounted receiving a phone call from an individual claiming to be from Eslite's marketing department, inquiring about a book she purchased earlier this year titled "If China Attacks."

 

Subsequently, a person posing as an Eslite pollster contacted Yang for a survey. She grew suspicious upon noticing his accent and choice of language, which hinted at a non-Taiwanese origin. During the call, the impersonator made controversial statements, declaring Taiwan an "inalienable part of China" and asserting that even Taiwan-born individuals remain Chinese.

MODA promptly formed a team comprising experts from the National Institute of Cyber Security, the Institute for Information Industry, and the National Police Agency to conduct an extensive investigation. In a separate development, representatives from the Eslite bookstore were summoned by the Administration for Digital Industries of MODA on Monday to provide clarification on the matter.

Vice Premier Cheng Wen-tsan emphasized on Monday that Yang's account exemplified "cognitive warfare" tactics and assured the public of MODA's commitment to a thorough investigation. However, Kuomintang Legislator Hung Meng-kai questioned the swiftness of the Tsai government's response, drawing comparisons to previous incidents.
 

"While past fraud cases took longer to handle, this particular incident has been dealt with swiftly. Does this indicate an indirect reference to cross-strait issues and national security?" Hung questioned.

According to legal requirements, an administrative investigation must be completed within three days. Following the probe, the government will scrutinize Eslite's data security measures to ensure compliance with relevant regulations.

Taiwan Affairs

#Eslite bookstore#Ministry of Digital Affairs#data leak#China#national security

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