The German car manufacturer, Volkswagen, announced on Friday that it was exposed to an information hack that led to the leakage of data at one of its suppliers, affecting more than 3.3 million people in North America.

“We recently discovered that a third party obtained without permission the personal information of current and potential customers of a supplier with which Audi and Volkswagen cooperate, and certain franchises in the United States and Canada for online sales and marketing activities,” the company’s US subsidiary said.


The leaked information was collected between 2014 and 2019 and placed on an unprotected electronic file by this unnamed supplier.

The German company indicated that the hacking affected sensitive information used for purchases or loans, including driver’s license numbers, belonging to about 900,000 current or potential Audi customers in the United States.

The leaks also included less sensitive information, including names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses, for about 3.1 million Audi customers in the United States and 163,000 in Canada. The hack also affected the data of about 3,300 customers of “Volkswagen” in the United States.

The group confirmed that it is communicating with the people concerned, explaining that it has notified the relevant authorities.

In recent weeks, several US companies have been subjected to cyber attacks with a varying scope of impact.

Fast-food chain McDonald’s announced Friday that customer data in South Korea and Taiwan had been leaked during a cyber attack.

Meat giant GPS Group also announced that it was forced earlier this month to pay a fine of $11 million in virtual currencies due to a cyber attack.

Weeks ago, the “Colonial Pipeline” company, which transports about 45 percent of the fuel consumed on the eastern coast of the United States, was forced to pay $ 4.4 million to computer hackers, a ransom part of which was later recovered by the US authorities.