It’s happened again, folks. Another bitcoin ransomware attack has occurred, only this time, it appears the victimized company – in this case foreign exchange venture Travelex – had no other choice but to pay what the hackers were asking for.
The Latest Bitcoin Ransomware Attack in the Books
The event took place in early 2020, and executives have allegedly paid the hackers as many as 285 bitcoins as a means of getting their network and respective data back. It’s a scary thought that something so unfair could occur. Someone takes all your data and you must pay them to get it back?
Last January, the company released the following statement to its clients:
We regret having to suspend some of our services in order to contain the virus and protect data. We apologize to all our customers for any inconvenience caused as a result. We are doing all we can to restore our full services as soon as possible.
The company was allegedly undergoing what they referred to as “software disturbances” back then. Officials then retracted this statement and admitted that their servers had been subjected to malware, though they were confident that customer private data had not been compromised by the event. However, they were still taking no chances and decided to shut down their systems as a means of keeping their users protected.
In addition, executives explained that there was a mass investigation going on and that they were taking advice from security officials. They refused to discuss any further details.
Ransomware attacks are proving all too common in the cryptocurrency arena nowadays. Many hackers are seeking out vulnerabilities in networks that allow them to encrypt private company data that they then hold hostage. Granted the ventures in question are not able to pay or refuse to pay the ransom the hackers are requesting, they run the risk of having their data broadcast for the world to see.
Granted they decide to pay, their systems or networks are often released within 48 hours or sooner. The amount of money gifted to the hackers by Travelex is reported to be as much as $4 million.
Who’s Telling the Truth?
The event took quite a toll on the company, which was so hurt that employees were having to calculate various exchange rates not with computers, but with simple pens and paper. The BBC allegedly got a hold of the hackers responsible for the attack, and while Travelex is claiming that no consumer data was compromised, the hackers told the BBC a different story, and said they made off with about five GB of “valuable” data.
Ransomware attacks have become a regular thing, especially during these times when fear surrounding the coronavirus is so high. Recent cases involve a new COVID-19 app being utilized to hide ransomware.