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December 9, 2011

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3 convicted in peddling of customer data

THREE people, including two employees of a local telecommunications company, pleaded guilty yesterday of illegally selling and acquiring individuals' and companies' private information, making a profit of more than 42,000 yuan (US$6,600), the Changning District People's Court said.

Chen Jie, 24, and Deng Weichao, 25, were sentenced to seven months and six months with a one-year reprieve, respectively. The third convict, Lu Ming, 34, was fined 5,000 yuan, the court ruled.

The court said Deng took advantage of her position in a service hall of China Telecom on Wuning Road S. and illegally downloaded the private information of 98 of the company's clients, including their names, addresses, ID card numbers and call logs through the internal network.

From November 2009 to May 2011, Deng sold 88 clients' private information to her former colleague, Chen, and earned about 17,000 yuan. Chen then resold the information to a private detective named Feng Haotian and made a profit of more than 20,000 yuan.

The court also said that Deng sold data on the other 10 clients to Lu, who was also her colleague, for 4,100 yuan, and Lu resold it to another private detective surnamed Gu at a profit of 900 yuan.

Deng confessed that she knew the password to the client database and that she stole the electronic key from the director of the service hall to get access. She sent all the information through text messages and e-mail, even using her former colleagues' e-mails sometimes, the court heard.

Deng's illegal business was discovered by her company and she surrendered to the police on May 9. The other two convicts were captured the same day.

The two detectives who purchased the data are still at large, according to police.


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