1.) From now on, the government of Maryland has decided to draw stringent penalties against ransomware developers and spreaders with state lawmakers already planning to transform the bill into law by March second week this year.
Thus, those convicted of ransomware crimes may face tougher penalties in coming weeks which include those who plotted ransomware attacks on the IT assets of the University of Maryland Medical System in 2018 and on the Salisbury Police Department in Jan’19.
Maryland Senate Bill 151 presented in duplicate with House Bill 211, would from now define ransomware attacks that result in a loss greater than $1,000 as a felony- subjecting the guilty to a fine of up to $100,000 and a max sentence of 10 years in prison.
Currently, the Maryland law considers the ransomware attacks resulting in loss lesser than $10k as a misdemeanor, while those greater than $10,000 as a felony.
2.) Coming to the second news trending on google regarding cyber attacks, Mimecast researchers have found that the cyber world was filled with email phishing attacks laced with Gandcrab Ransomware on the Valentine’s Day 2019.
Thus researchers have confirmed that February 14th of this year made cyber crooks spread ransomware via love themed emails.
It is a known fact that like the Christmas season, Valentine’s Day makes people buy gifts to their loved ones- giving the hackers a bigger window of possibility to target. And this is where those spreading Gandcrab Ransomware made a mark on the V-day.
Remember the same malware variant infected more than 50K victims and generated at least $600,000 in revenue for hackers in the year 2018.
3.) Home Furnishings company ‘Klaussner’ said that a recent cyber attack on its database has disrupted some of the operations of the company from Wednesday this week. The cyber incident is presently under investigation and a leading forensics firm has been pressed into service to investigate and remediate the issue.
The nature of the cyber attack is yet to be known, but highly placed sources say that it was a ransomware variant which locked up the database from access. To those who do not know much about ‘Klaussner’, it is a Home furnishings company which produces upholstered furniture/foam products and is one of the biggest employers in Randolph County has a headcount of over 1300 full-time employees.
4.) After almost three years, Wendy’s which suffered a massive cyber attack in 2015 has officially disclosed that it has entered into an amicable agreement with the financial firms which filed class-action lawsuits against the fast food chain as a result of a series of cyber attacks on its franchises.
Now to those who know nothing about the incident, here’s a gist. Wendy’s learned in the year 2016 that hackers had invaded its Point of Sale(PoS) systems at more than 1,000 locations or around 18% of Wendy’s franchised locations in November 2015.
Later during an investigation, the Ohio based company learned that the criminals attacked its database between Nov’15 to May’16 and one in specific which lasted from Oct’15 to March’16 where the hackers accessed info related to the debit and credit cards of customers and that includes card numbers, cardholder names, expiration dates- all through a malware inducted into the Point of Sale(PoS) systems of the company.
As Wendy’s failed to notify its customers, clients, and franchise about the incident, it had to face a nationwide class-action suit in 2016 from various financial institutions which demanded $50 million as compensation on whole. In April’18 it was revealed that the attack could have impacted over 37 million customers,
5.) The news is out that the whole money was stolen by hackers from Bank of Valletta(BOV), Malta could never be recovered due to various reasons and only a partial amount from the entire €13 million can be obtained by reversing the transaction.
Kenneth Farrugia, the Chief Business Development Officer of BOV stated that on a total 11 transactions were made by hackers to steal the amount. And only three could be recovered through reversed transactions.
After the attack, all the bank operations including those at the branch, ATMs and mobile banking were suspended till 1 PM on Wednesday from late Tuesday.
Farrugia added that the bank is yet to detect those behind the attack. But confirmed that the authorities have already reached the core of the incident and will soon reveal the individual/groups behind the incident.