SEOUL, Aug. 23 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korea’s biggest accommodation booking app Yanolja has defeated its industry rival Good Choice in a civil suit launched over an alleged leak of confidential company information, judicial officials said Monday.
The Seoul Central District Court has ordered Good Choice Company (GCC), the operator of the namesake hotel reservation platform, to pay a compensation of 1 billion won (US$850,000) to Yanolja for stealing a large quantity of information on the latter’s partner accommodations five years ago.
The court also prohibited GCC from duplicating, distributing, transferring, selling and storing information on Yanolja’s partner accommodations across the nation.
Yanolja started the civil suit in 2018 after alleging that GCC had stolen a huge amount of data on its partner accommodations from its computer server in 2016.
“Executives and employees of the defendant used the plaintiff’s partner accommodation information in violation of fair business practices and competition order even though they knew their act infringed on the business interests of the plaintiff,” the court said.
It dismissed the defendant’s claim that the information taken from Yanolja was of little value while saying the amount of compensation was determined in consideration of the plaintiff’s yearly personnel expenses at its sales department.
In a relevant criminal lawsuit, meanwhile, GCC officials were initially found guilty of information theft by a district court in March 2019 but were acquitted by an appellate court later.
The appellate court ruled that Yanolja did not appear to have hid the information or kept it private. The case has since been appealed to the Supreme Court.