Senators Ask FTC to Investigate Amazon over Capital One Breach

According to The Wall Street Journal, Senate Finance Committee head Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon and presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts have written a letter to the FTC asking to investigate Amazon’s responsibility regarding the Capital One Data Breach.

What Happened? Back in August, Capital One revealed that a hacker had successfully stolen personal data from over 100 million customers. More specifically at least 140,000 US Social Security Numbers, 1 million Canadian Social Insurance Numbers, and 80,000 bank account numbers were taken. 

So Why Amazon? At the time of the breach, Capital One was storing a lot of consumers’ sensitive data via Amazon Cloud Services. The hacker, Paige Thompson, is a former employee of Amazon who used to work in their cloud services department. The Senators say in their letter that Amazon ignored warnings and danger signs that their cloud service storing the Capital One customers’ personal and private data could be exposed or breached. The letter continues saying Amazon was aware of the vulnerabilities a year before the breach happened.

This is significant because The Capital One Data Breach of over 100 million consumers is one of the largest cyberattacks in history. Senator Wyden and Senator Warren are asking the FTC to determine if Amazon’s negligence of vulnerabilities and responsibility to act upon said vulnerabilities, violates federal law as an “unfair business practice.” As more and more businesses move their data to cloud services and storage, it is important to make sure you understand how cloud services work, and what it means for your data.