A criminal stole “a significant amount of data” in a hacking attack that targeted one of the busiest airports in Australia.

According to The West Australian, the breach occurred in March 2016 when a Vietnamese man named Le Duc Hoang Hai abused a third-party contractor’s credentials to access the systems at Perth Airport, the fourth busiest airport in Australia. Kevin Brown, chief executive of the airport, says Perth’s IT team ultimately detected the breach and notified both the Australian Cyber Security Centre and the Australian Federal Police. As quoted in a statement provided to 9News Australia:

The assistance and hard work of these two agencies has resulted in the successful identification and prosecution of the individual responsible for the cyber intrusion. Based on evidence gathered by the Australian Federal Police, it appears that credit card theft was the motivation for the illegal accessing of our system. No personal data of members of the public, such as details of credit card numbers, was accessed but other Perth Airport documents were taken.

Those documents included building schematics and details of physical security measures that staff had implemented at the airport.

Perth Airport. (Source: Wikipedia)

Upon hearing from Perth Airport, the Australian Cyber Security Centre and the Australian Federal Police traced the attack back to Vietnam and tipped off local authorities. Vietnamese law enforcement subsequently began looking into the matter. Their investigation identified 31-year-old Hai as the culprit responsible for hacking not only Perth but also additional targets in Vietnam including banks and an online military newspaper.

Perth was Hai’s only Australian target.

Vietnamese police thereafter arrested Hai. In early December 2017, a military court ordered him to serve four years in prison for his digital offenses.

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