Former Equifax Employee Pleads Guilty To Insider Trading

Sudhakar Reddy Bonthu is the second former Equifax employee to be charged with insider trading after the 2017 cyberattack. In March, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia B.J. Pak was joined by federal prosecutors and the FBI to announce the indictment of another former Equifax employee, Jun Ying on insider trading charges. Ying was the former chief information officer at Equifax, faces up to 25 years in prison and civil penalties.

Tasnim Shamma / WABE

Former Equifax employee Sudhakar Reddy Bonthu pleaded guilty to insider trading Monday.

Bonthu was a software development manager at Equifax during a cyberattack last year that exposed personal information like social security numbers and birth dates of more than 147 million people.

Richard Best is director of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s regional office in Atlanta.

“Bonthu used confidential information to determine that his company had suffered a massive data breach and then violated company policy to illegally profit from it,” Best said. “Corporate employees cannot take advantage of their access to sensitive information and unlawfully benefit from it.”

Bonthu made a profit of more than $75,000 by buying 86 put options in Equifax stock that expired on Sept. 15, 2017. The company made the data breach public on Sept. 7.

Bonthu is the second former Equifax employee to be charged with insider trading. The company’s former former chief information officer, Jun Ying, was indicted in March.

Equifax said Bonthu was fired earlier this year for refusing to participate in an internal investigation.