HYBE files complaints against those who leaked, traded artists' flight information; talks about ‘zero-tolerance policy’ - Hindustan Times
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HYBE files complaints against those who leaked, traded artists' flight information; talks about ‘zero-tolerance policy’

By | Edited by Ananya Das
Jun 18, 2024 02:05 PM IST

As per HYBE, the suspects are "accused of profiting tens of millions to hundreds of millions of won from selling artists’ flight ticket info".

HYBE has shared that they filed complaints with the police against a the individuals who illegally obtained and traded flight information of HYBE’s artists. As per a Soompi report, the South Korean police decided to forward the case to the prosecution after completing their investigation recently. (Also Read | HYBE draws criticism for uninspired BTS Festa 2024 merchandise, fans express disappointment over low-effort designs)

HYBE has taken action against several individuals.(AP)
HYBE has taken action against several individuals.(AP)

HYBE takes legal measures against these people

The statement read, "Hello, this is HYBE. We would like to inform you of the legal measures taken against those who illegally obtained and sold flight ticket information of HYBE LABELS artists, following several months of close cooperation with investigative authorities since the second half of last year."

Why HYBE took the step

HYBE said that some people engaged in "stalking behaviours". The statement further read, “Selling or buying illegally obtained flight information of artists is clearly an unlawful act that threatens their safety and creates anxiety. Nevertheless, there has been an increase in individuals looking up artists’ illegally obtained seat information or secretly taking pictures while riding on the same plane. Some even engaged in stalking behaviours, using this information to repeatedly approach and attempt to contact the artists. There have been frequent cases where some have gone far as arbitrarily changing artists’ seats and in-flight meals or canceling their flight reservations, causing disturbances to their schedules.”

HYBE started working on this in 2023

The label said that it started working against these violaters since last year. "We have concluded that these actions are a serious issue that goes beyond privacy violations, potentially threatening the safety of the artists and causing safety incidents at airports and on planes. To address this, starting in September last year, we organized a special task force dedicated to protecting our artists from the illegal trade of flight ticket information and eradicating illegal selling activities," it added.

These people allegedly pocketed “hundreds of millions of won”

As per HYBE, the suspects are "accused of profiting tens of millions to hundreds of millions of won from selling artists’ flight ticket info". It further continued, "Before taking legal action for personal information breaches, we identified a number of social media accounts that were illegally selling our artists’ flight details online and gathered evidence to identify the operators. We filed complaints against these accounts for violating the Personal Information Protection Act among other regulations, and actively cooperated with the investigative agencies," the statement said.

“Based on the submitted evidence, the investigative agencies conducted long-term domestic and overseas investigations. In May, they identified suspects, including those presumed to be foreigners, and conducted additional detailed investigations. The suspects are accused of profiting tens of millions to hundreds of millions of won from selling artists’ flight ticket information through social media channels over an extended period,” it also added.

What all steps HYBE will take?

Apart from taking legal action, HYBE has also sought cooperation from airlines and travel agents. It said, “HYBE also plans to actively cooperate with investigative authorities for further investigations and future judicial proceedings. Furthermore, we are committed to holding the perpetrators accountable until the end, adhering to a zero-tolerance policy, and responding sternly to acts of crime that commercialize and trade artists’ personal information, without entering into any agreements or making favorable arrangements."

"Additionally, to protect artists’ privacy and prevent further leaks, we have reviewed relevant procedures and systems, and sought cooperation from airlines and travel agents. We will continue working closely with various organizations to ensure the privacy of our artists. Thank you," concluded the statement.

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