Chinese police have arrested 21 suspects for stealing information from Alibaba delivery arm. Photo: Reuters
INTERNATIONAL – Police in east China's Zhejiang Province arrested 21 suspects for stealing more than 10 million pieces of data including customer information from Alibaba's delivery arm Cainiao Network.

In June, police in Hangzhou received reports from the logistics company that barcode scanners used in its distribution stations had been infected with malware that transferred the collected data to remote cloud servers.

The data included the names of the logistic firms, user names, phone numbers and parcel tracking numbers, according to Cainiao.

From July to September, local police launched raids in the provinces of Anhui, Jiangsu and Shandong, and arrested the suspects. They also confiscated 10 cloud servers, and over 30 phones and computers used in the case.

Police said the suspects were service providers to local Cainiao's distribution stations. They used this advantage to install the malware on the scanners and collected the information for promoting commercial content on their social media accounts.

The malware was first developed in August 2017. As of June, more than 10 million pieces of data had been collected, according to police.

Cainiao said the loopholes have now been fixed.