Business Essentials for Professionals


Risk Of Data Breach Faced By Over 2 Million Owners Of Toyota In Japan

Risk Of Data Breach Faced By Over 2 Million Owners Of Toyota In Japan
Toyota Motor Corp said on Friday that owing to human mistake, the car data of 2.15 million Japanese users, or nearly the entire customer base who signed up for its primary cloud service platforms since 2012, had been publicly available for a decade.
The issue, which also affected customers of its premium brand Lexus, occurs as the world's largest automaker by sales makes a push into vehicle connectivity and cloud-based data management, both of which are considered as critical to enabling autonomous driving and other AI-backed capabilities.
The problem, which began in November 2013 and continued until mid-April, was caused by human mistake, which resulted in a cloud system being set to public rather than private, according to a Toyota representative.
It could include information such as car positions and device identification numbers, but there have been no indications of nefarious use, according to the business.
"There was a lack of active detection mechanisms, and activities to detect the presence or absence of things that became public," the spokesperson said in response to why it took time to realise there had been an error.
Toyota stated that it would implement a system for auditing cloud settings, build up a system for continuously monitoring settings, and properly educate personnel on data handling standards.
Customers who signed up for the T-Connect programme, which provides a variety of services such as AI voice-enabled driving assistance, auto connection to contact centres for vehicle management, and emergency support in circumstances such as a traffic accident or severe illness, were among those affected.
Users of G-Link, a comparable service for Lexus vehicle owners, were also affected.
According to one of its staff, Japan's Personal Information Protection Commission has been alerted about the event, but has declined to disclose any details, in keeping with its policy of not commenting on specific occurrences.
Toyota stated that after the vulnerability was detected, steps were taken to prevent unauthorised access to the data, and an examination into all cloud environments administered by Toyota Connected Corp was underway.
Large leaks of personal data occur on a regular basis in Japan. In March, NTT DoCoMo claimed that data from up to 5.29 million consumers may have been exposed through a business to whom it outsourced work.
The incident adds to the issues facing Koji Sato, who took over as Toyota CEO on April 1 from Akio Toyoda, the company's founder's grandson.
Toyota has disclosed safety test flaws at its affiliate Daihatsu and received a shareholder petition from a trio of European asset managers to boost disclosure of its climate change campaigning since he assumed office.

Christopher J. Mitchell

Markets | Companies | M&A | Innovation | People | Management | Lifestyle | World | Misc