Paytm Mall has sent a legal notice threatening to initiate defamation proceedings against cybersecurity startup Cyble Inc for a report that the US-based firm published last month about an alleged cybersecurity breach of its database.
The ‘seize and desist’ notice gives Cyble seven days to make public clarifications regarding the report, which Paytm claims is false.
Lack of compliance will result in criminal and civil suits, according the document issued on September 4, of which ET has seen a copy.
“…you have attempted to prey on the reputation of our company by feeding counterfactual and fallacious information to the innocent public who are vulnerable to misinformation,” the document said.
Cyble told ET that it had received Paytm Mall’s notice related to its blog post about the security breach.
“In this regard, Cyble states that the said notice is under review and a suitable reply shall be given to Paytm Mall placing on record all the relevant facts and its stand,” a spokesperson for the cybersecurity firm said in an email.
Paytm Mall contends that Cyble did not conduct due diligence in verifying facts and had committed slander and intentional misinformation.
The cybersecurity research firm, which specializes in detection, analysis, and research of security protocols across the Indian cyber landscape, last month released a report alleging “massive” breach of Paytm Mall’s database.
According to the firm, hackers’ group John Wick – which hacks databases of companies under the guise of offering help to fix bugs in their systems — was behind the alleged breach. Paytm denied the incident at the time.
“This (breach) was tipped off to us from an “alleged” ex-cartel member of a credible hacking group “John Wick,” Cyble had said in a blog post on August 30.
John Wick is allegedly the same hacker group that had hacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s personal website last week asking its 2.5 million followers to make cryptocurrency donations to the PM’s relief fund.