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News Link • Transportation

Toyota Contractor Accused of Sabotaging Company Network, Stealing Data

• Kim Zetter via

A former programmer for Toyota has been accused of sabotaging applications on the car company’s network and stealing data after he was fired from his job last week, according to a civil complaint filed by the company.

Abrahimshah Shahulhameed, a 35-year-old citizen of India who is in the U.S. on a work visa, worked for GlobalSource IT, a contractor that provided computer services for Toyota.

After he was terminated from his job on August 23, Shahulhameed allegedly accessed the company’s secure website and stole confidential data and trade secrets pertaining to Toyota’s suppliers, including pricing information as well as proprietary design information, quality testing data and parts testing data. He then allegedly sabotaged 13 applications related to the supplier website and caused it to crash, according to documents (.pdf) filed in U.S. District court in the Eastern District of Kentucky. Shahulhameed allegedly “removed critical security certifications on the internal server, causing the programs to be inoperable,” Toyota says.

Toyota asserts that if the information Shahulhameed allegedly stole was disseminated to competitors or otherwise made public, “it would be highly damaging to Toyota, and its suppliers, causing immediate and irreparable damage.”

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