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Data breach at Amazon India exposes sellers' financial data

Sutrishna Ghosh
posted on 10th January 2019
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Retail giant Amazon did not reveal any details about the number of sellers affected by the breach but said its team had resolved the situation.

Not long back US-headquartered Amazon had faced a massive data breach that left many of its customer names and email addresses exposed. Now, Amazon India has admitted to yet a technical glitch. This time around, though, the privacy breach has affected sellers and vendors on the ecommerce site, exposing their private financial information to other competing sellers.

There are close to 4 million merchants selling on the retail giant’s online platform and another 150 million registered users. Although the company did not mention anything about the extent of the leak and how many sellers were exposed, the official statement said their technical team had resolved the issue on Tuesday.

“On Sunday, some sellers who attempted to download Merchant Tax Reports for the month of December 2018 experienced a technical issue,” an Amazon India spokesperson said. “Our teams identified the issue and resolved it on priority and sellers were soon able to  download the correct MTR reports.”

The merchant tax reports in question basically comprise data relating to sales, category-wise split and inventory data, reports Business Standard. While Amazon claims to have resolved the situation and fixed the glitch on a priority basis, sellers and vendors have raised concerns about the exposure of the competitive business information and if it could prove detrimental in any way.

This is not the first time the company has been hit by such technical glitches. Earlier in November, Amazon.com faced a similar situation after a data breach exposed user information on the website. At the time, Amazon didn’t reveal anything about the extent of the leak. In the following month, reports surfaced that the ecommerce retailer had severed ties with several of its employees based in India and the US over the alleged leak of internal company information to merchants.

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