Australia says engaging with Ticketmaster over hacking 'incident'

MELBOURNE - Australia's government said its cyber security office was "engaging" with US-based Ticketmaster after a hacking group claimed to have accessed the details of 560 million global customers.

The well-known hacking group ShinyHunters posted evidence of the hack on the dark web, according to a screenshot shared widely on social media, claiming to have swiped the personal details of more than half a billion clients. 

The group demanded a ransom payment of US$500,000, describing it as a "one-time sale", according to the post.

The stolen data purportedly included names, addresses, emails, phone numbers and the last four digits of customer credit card numbers along with the expiry dates.

"The National Office of Cyber Security is engaging with Ticketmaster to understand the incident," an Australian government spokesperson said in a statement. 

It urged people with "specific inquiries" to contact Ticketmaster directly.

In January, a court in Seattle jailed Sebastien Raoult, a French computer hacker who was part of the ShinyHunters criminal gang.

He was sentenced to three years in prison and ordered to pay more than $5 million in restitution after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and aggravated identity theft.

US prosecutors said the extensive hacking caused millions of dollars in losses to victim companies and "unmeasurable additional losses" to hundreds of millions of individuals whose data was sold to other criminals.

AFP has contacted Ticketmaster seeking comment.

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