A 39-year-old Korean that goes by the name of Shin, arrested last year by Philippines authorities in the Batangas province, has been repatriated to Korea on December 14. He is accused of illegally accessing the servers of Hyundai Capital between February and April 2011.
In 2010, Shin was working as a hacker with illegal gambling websites from the Philippines when he was contacted by a 36-year-old real estate agent named Jeong who offered him 10 million Won ($10,000 / 8,000 EUR) to hack into the systems of Hyundai Capital Services – a consumer finance firm that provides a wide range of financing services.
Before being made this offer, Shin was being paid ten times less by the owners of the illegal gambling sites to take out the competition, the Korea Joongang Daily reports.
After hacking into a proxy server used by Hyundai Capital’s administrators, the hacker managed to gain access to the personal details of 1.75 million customers.
With all that data in hand, Jeong blackmailed the company, threatening to publish the information on the Web if they didn’t wire him 500 million won ($500,000 / 350,000 EUR). Hyundai Capital agreed to pay 100 million won ($100,000 / 80,000 EUR).
Shortly after the incident, the hacking case became public and Shin’s notoriety grew to the point where other cybercriminals started impersonating him.
He became wanted by the Interpol so he attempted to pass himself off as Japanese. However, his luck ran out when one of his accomplices from Korea was arrested and ratted him out.
In the early stages of his life, Shin was aspiring to become a pop singer, but in 2000 he decided to focus his efforts on learning everything there was to know about hacking.
Between 2005 and 2007, he spent time in prison for hacking into the servers of an online game portal to steal virtual currency that he sold to other players. He moved to the Philippines after he was released from jail.
Update. The article has been updated to clarify that Shin was arrested by Philippines authorities in 2011.