The fifth-largest travel company within the United States, CWT, that boasts an annual revenue of over $1.5 Bln, agreed to pay $4.5 Mln worth of Bitcoin [BTC] to hackers who hijacked its computing system.
In line with a recent report by Reuters, the Bitcoin wallet owned by cybercriminals received 414 BTC In total.
System Infected With Ragnar Locker Ransomware
Cybersecurity researcher JAMESWT discovered that CWT’s data system had been infected with Ragnar Locker ransomware earlier on 30th July.
The company later confirmed that it indeed suffered a security breach so it had to temporarily locked up its system.
Within their ransomware note, hackers claimed that they downloaded 2 TB of sensitive data, including billing information, insurance cases and financial reports.
However, the hackers reportedly exaggerated the number of infected computer systems, that they claimed was 30k.
The initial demand was $10 Mln worth of Bitcoin [BTC], but CWT, that was ravaged by the COVID -19 outbreak lockdown, agreed to pay only $4.5 Mln to urge its system back online and recover all stolen data.
An ongoing investigation has thus far shown that the private information of CWT customers wasn’t suffering from the incident:
While the investigation is at an early stage, we’ve no indication that personally identifiable info/customer and traveller information has been compromised.
Ransomware Attacks Are Becoming More Common
Ransomware attacks still cripple businesses and even whole cities, causing billions of dollars worth of losses.
A school district in Texas recently blocked access to all of its data (including schedules and grades) following a similar event. Earlier this week , its board of trustees had to hand over a $50k in Bitcoin ransom.