Suspect believed sold stolen Benesse data to several name-list firms


A Tokyo systems engineer who was arrested last week on suspicion of stealing data from Benesse Corp. reportedly told investigators that he sold the data to several name-list traders, it was learned Friday.

Masomi Matsuzaki, 39, initially said he sold the data only to a name-list trader in Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo, but investigators believe the data were dispersed through several channels, sources said.

According to the sources, the company in Chiyoda Ward told the police that it has sold the data to some 50 companies, including a cram school, a kimono dealer and a photo studio, in addition to selling roughly 4.5 million personal data entries to an educational service firm in Kyushu.

Matsuzaki was arrested on July 17 for illegally copying and stealing data on some 10 million customers of education service provider Benesse Corp., at an office of Benesse’s afiiliate, Synform Co. He reporedly told police that he had thought the company would not be aware of the theft.