Alibaba shares plunge on data theft probe report

STORY: Alibaba shares plunged Friday (July 15) on reports it faces a new probe in China.

The Wall Street Journal says the tech giant’s cloud division has been summoned over a theft of police data.

An anonymous hacker earlier this month claimed to have obtained information on 1 billion Chinese residents from the police in Shanghai.

The report says the file was left open on the internet for a year with no password.

Researchers say it was on Alibaba’s cloud platform.

Company executives have since reportedly been called in by Shanghai officials.

There was no immediate comment from the city or the firm.

But the alleged breach comes at a bad time, with Chinese watchdogs tightening scrutiny of tech giants and data privacy.

The news sent Alibaba’s Hong Kong-traded shares down close to 6% on Friday.

That put them on track for their biggest weekly drop since debuting on the city’s stock exchange in 2019.

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