The US Securities and Exchange Commission has filed insider trading charges against Jun Ying, the ex-chief information officer of an Equifax US business unit. The regulator contends that Ying engaged in insider trading in 2007 before the consumer credit reporting agency announced that there had been a major data breach exposing personal information of approximately 148 million customers in the US. Among the information that was disclosed were social security numbers, names, addresses, and birth dates.
The Commission’s complaint accuses Yin of using confidential information to determine that Equifax had experienced a major breach. The SEC said that before the company disclosed the information breach, Ying exercised all the Equifax stock options he had vested and made almost $1M when he sold the shares. The regulator claims that Ying was able to avoid losing over $117K by selling the shares when he did.
Now, the SEC, which has filed charges against Ying accusing him of violating federal securities laws’ antifraud provisions, is pursuing ill-gotten gains, interest, injunctive relief, and penalties against him. Ying resigned from Equifax after the company found out about his trades and reportedly made plans to let him go. US prosecutors have filed a parallel criminal case against Ying.