March 2024, cybersecurity round-up

March 26, 2024 | Cybersecurity
Chloe Schofield

Written by
Chloe Schofield

2024 is in full swing, and so are cyberattacks. Multiple industries are falling victim to cybercrime, from healthcare services to automotive manufacturers and beverage companies to fashion brands. As always, this is a stark reminder that all businesses, regardless of size or sector, are vulnerable.

First, we will look at the recent cyberattack on the household car manufacturer Hyundai Motor Corporation.

Hyundai Europe has experienced data theft due to network breach

The German-based division of Hyundai Europe recently suffered an attack, reportedly from the ransomware gang Black Basta. The unauthorised third-party breach resulted in 3TB of stolen data. The South Korean automaker has yet to confirm what data were stolen or the full extent of the breach.

The automotive manufacturer has strong defences in place, and this attack demonstrates the power of persistent and motivated criminals who are determined to go up against large global companies.

This isn’t the first time Hyundai has experienced security issues. Back in 2022, a bug was found that could control vehicle locks and mechanical features.

A Hyundai spokesperson advised that external cybersecurity and legal experts have been contacted, and relevant authorities have been notified of the recent data attack. Investigations into the incident are ongoing.

A fortnight of disruption for Leicester City Council

Leicester City Council recently experienced a "cyber incident" to its online systems, which led to the council shutting down its IT and phone systems for a fortnight. Although details surrounding the incident have not yet been published, as a precautionary measure, the council is now working on getting the affected systems back online but said it will "take time" to get back to full operation.

Leicester City Council has advised that it will notify anyone if their data have been affected. With services such as housing benefits and financial services targeted in the attack, those making payments via automatic direct debit could experience issues, but the council intends to make alternative methods of payment available.

French government experienced numerous cyberattacks

According to sources within the Prime Minister's office, French news agency AFP disclosed that numerous government departments have faced computer attacks of "unprecedented intensity."

These attacks have targeted multiple government departments since early March. Despite speculations, a government source mentioned there is currently no evidence pointing towards Russian involvement. Despite the attacks, government services remained operational without disruption.

Romanian hospitals experience ransomware attack

One hundred hospitals across Romania were hit by a ransomware attack targeting their healthcare management system over a weekend. The attack encrypted the HIS (Hipocrate Information System). While 25 hospitals have confirmed encrypted data, 75 others have proactively shut down their systems pending investigation.

The Romanian Ministry of Health has initiated an investigation involving cybersecurity experts from the National Cyber Security Directorate (DNSC) to assess recovery options. The attackers, using Backmydata ransomware, have demanded a ransom of 3.5 BTC (roughly €157,000). Affected hospitals are resorting to paper-based record-keeping, and there is uncertainty regarding data security and the potential loss of patient information. Despite these developments, the software service provider, RSC, has yet to issue a public statement or respond to inquiries.

Production facilities at a Belgian beer firm shut down

Belgian beer company Duvel experienced a cyber-attack suspected to be ransomware, halting production at four of its breweries. Initially affecting five facilities, one has since resumed operations. The company's IT systems promptly detected the attack, leading to immediate shutdowns.

Investigations are ongoing, with limited details available. Duvel, known for brands like Chouffe and Vedett, generated €583m in revenue in 2022, producing around 230 million litres of beer. It remains uncertain if product supply will be impacted.

NHS Scotland suffers targeted cyberattack

March saw cybercrime impact public health services once again. NHS Dumfries and Galloway are confronting a significant cyberattack and working with authorities to manage the breach. The health board warns of potential data compromise and service disruptions, urging vigilance from staff and the public. The trusts have encouraged staff and patients to contact Police Scotland if they are approached by anyone claiming to have their data.

Cybersecurity experts suggest the incident resembles a ransomware attack, causing widespread concern in the community. Investigations are ongoing, with authorities emphasising established protocols for handling such situations and providing support to affected parties. A dedicated webpage has also been created on the NHS Dumfries and Galloway website. It's not yet clear the damage of the attack, but locals have expressed fears that there could be a knock-on effect on GP surgeries and their patients.

Cyberattack puts Vans customers at risk of identity theft and fraud

Back in December, we highlighted the cyberattack on shoe manufacturer Vans. Unauthorised activities were detected on Vans' parent company, VF Group's IT systems, at the end of 2023, and it has now been revealed that Vans customers are at potential risk of fraud or identity theft due to the data breach. Updates confirm that personal data like email addresses, names, and addresses may have been accessed.

Vans reassures that no payment or financial data were stored or compromised but advises vigilance against potential phishing attempts. The company promptly responded to the breach by shutting down affected systems and engaging cybersecurity experts. Law enforcement agencies have been notified, and Vans intends to review its cybersecurity protocols.

Cybersecurity with Brigantia

Businesses of all shapes and sizes are vulnerable to cybercrime. These latest cyber incidents illustrate how enterprises with strong defences are not immune to cybercrime. Companies need to have up-to-date, industry-recognised cybersecurity strategies.

We partner with industry-leading vendors, offering high-quality cybersecurity products to the MSP community. If you’d like to discuss your cybersecurity offering, contact the Brigantia team.

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