Report: Samsung’s LoopPay Attacked by Chinese Hackers
Oct. 8, 2015
LoopPay, the Boston-area mobile payments technology company acquired by Samsung in February , has been breached by Chinese hackers, according to a report yesterday in the New York Times. It appears, however, that concern centers around corporate espionage rather than an attempt to harvest customer information. LoopPay’s technology, unlike systems based on near-field communication (NFC), enables contactless payments at the point of sale without requiring merchants to upgrade to new terminals. The company’s magnetic secure transmission (MST) communicates with traditional mag stripe card readers. Samsung acquired LoopPay to differentiate its in-store mobile wallet offering—Samsung Pay—from competitors Apple Pay and Android Pay, which only use NFC to transmit payment information to POS terminals.
Will Graylin, the founder and CEO of LoopPay and co-general manager of Samsung Pay, told the Times the attackers compromised LoopPay’s corporate network, rather than the network that helps manage payments. Samsung moved quickly to reiterate that message and assure users that Samsung Pay’s systems were not breached.
“Samsung Pay was not impacted and at no point was any personal payment information at risk,” according to a statement from Samsung’s Chief Privacy Officer, Darlene Cedres. “This was an isolated incident that targeted the LoopPay corporate network, which is a physically separate network.”