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Ransomware: The true cost to businesses

Posted by Ben Pinder on 26/07 at 10:00 AM Cyber security,
Ransomware: The true cost to businesses

Earlier this month, the French postal service’s mobile virtual network operator suffered a ransomware attack that caused severe disruption to both administrative and managerial services.

The website for La Poste Mobile went down on July 4 and is yet to resurface more than two weeks later. The company have stated that those responsible may have also accessed customer data, increasing the risk of identity theft or phishing attacks for those whose data has been compromised.

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Who was responsible for this latest cyber-attack?

Lockbit, one of the world’s most active ransomware groups, laid claim to the attack via its own leak site.

The group, which operates on a ransomware as a service (RaaS) model, first surfaced in 2019 and have since expanded and evolved to become one of the most dominant ransomware strains in action.

RaaS is a widely used model that sells software to other third-party cyber criminals, who then use the software to commit ransomware attacks, sharing a percentage of the profits back to the creators.

Cybersecurity organisation NCC Group recently reported that Lockbit 2.0 was the most active threat actor in May 2022, overtaking other well-known groups such as Conti and Hive.

What impact does a ransomware attack have?

With almost 2 million customers, La Poste Mobile has reported no interruptions to the mobile service itself, but has issued the following advice to those who use the service:

“La Poste Mobile invites its customers to be vigilant, in particular by monitoring any attempt at phishing and/or identity theft and will of course keep them informed of the lessons learned from the ongoing investigations. Our teams are fully committed to resolving this situation as quickly as possible.”

The company’s website was taken down to minimise damage, but there is a high chance that personal information of their customers has been accessed by the hacker cyber criminals. At this stage, we do not know whether negotiations are taking place, the scale of the data stolen, or the amount of ransom (if any) requested.

Not only has this had a severe impact on the administration and managerial services within the company, not to mention putting potentially millions of users’ information at risk, this will no doubt cause huge reputational damage to the business, despite their best efforts to reassure their customers.

A recent Conti ransomware attack on KP Snacks severely disrupted their supply chain. At the time, Jack Chapman, VP of Threat Intelligence at Egress, said the incident highlighted the extent of supply chain upheavals that ransomware attacks can cause.

“Once attackers are inside your systems, they hold all the power – and for businesses like KP Snacks, this can create significant disruption and even cause day-to-day operations to grind to a halt. Depending on the scale of the attack, this can have a serious knock-on effect on an organisation’s bottom line.”

How can I protect my company from a RaaS attack?

The telecoms industry, with its large customer bases and the vital services they provide, are popular targets when it comes to cyber-crime, but they are not the only ones. If you run a business, protecting yourself against cyber-attacks is vital. As well as hackers causing severe disruption to your supply chain, the theft and potential leak of your customers’ personal information could also mean hefty fines for your business for breaching GDPR rules.

At swcomms, we can help you to begin to protect your business by completing a vulnerability assessment, delving deep into your IT infrastructure to identify potential ways in for cyber-criminals.

By using the right blend of firewalls and unified threat management tools, we can help you protect your system by closing these holes before they lead to a security breach.

If you would like to have a no-obligation discussion as to how we can help you protect your business, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me.


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Posted by
Ben Pinder's avatar
Ben Pinder on 26/07/2022

Ben has worked for the group for nearing 25 years.

He is a technical solutions and customer satisfaction driven individual with well-rounded experience in all aspects of the IT and telecoms industries. Providing excellent technical interaction between customers, sales personnel, manufacturers & and resellers, Ben is adept at analysing customer needs and applying it to the development of solutions.

At home, he enjoys bringing up his two boys and helping out coaching the local youth rugby teams.

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Contact: ben.pinder@tauruscc.co.uk

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