Steelite International headquartered at Stoke-on-Trent, the UK was hit by a cyber attack as a result of which its servers where encrypted which caused major disruption to its payroll systems. The attacker demanded ransom payment for recovery of its data. The pottery firm revealed that its IT team observed suspicious activity and began to address it while a ransom request came from the attacker.
Steelite International learned that cybercriminals have encrypted their servers by exploiting a vulnerability in the company’s system. However, the company disclosed that its IT team had rebuilt the server to ensure employees would receive their wages.
During the attack, a hacker from a remote computer outside of the UK infiltrated a weakness in the company’s system and began encrypting key files,” Jon Cameron, group finance director at Steelite International said.
The finance director said that the attacker demanded 79 bitcoins as ransom and that each bitcoin worth 2500 pound. He further confirmed that they have not replied to the ransom request.
In the memo to staff, Cameron wrote: "We cannot rule out the possibility that payroll data has been accessed and we recommend that you are extra vigilant in relation to any unexpected or unauthorized activity on your bank account and your credit profile.”
The firm has reported the incident to the National Cyber Security Center and Staffordshire Police. The firm has also informed its staff and has enhanced security measures in order to protect itself against future attacks.
"Panic mode did set in initially but thanks to the fantastic work of the IT team working through the night to build the server again, we made sure the hackers didn't get what they wanted,” Cameron concluded.