Hackers force Dutch Museum to pay ₤2.4M

Hackers reportedly forced a Dutch Museum to pay ₤2.4M for an 1824 painting related to John Constable: A view of the Hampstead Heath-Child’s Hill, Harrow in the Distance. Later it was discovered that the cyber crooks posed as an art dealer in London to notch the deal which was fake and was only meant to mint money.

Cybersecurity Insiders learned from a source of Daily Mail that the hackers first intercepted the email communication between Rijksmuseum Twenthe based in the Netherlands and the London based art dealer named Dickinson- known to purchase old master paintings.

Then they posed as Dickinson and asked the Rijks Museum to send ₤2.4M to a Hong Kong-based bank account after which a painting related to Constable will be sent to them via mail.

The museum later learned about the fraud and sued Dickinson for promoting fake deal and swindling money in millions.

However, Dickinson argued that the case was negligent as the museum became a victim of cyber fraud as it failed to notice in time that the person whom they were dealing with was based in London and how could they send the money to a Hong Kong-based bank account.

As the Dickinson was denied the ownership of funds it replicated as such in the painting’s ownership, prompting the museum and the London dealer land in the court and will stay so until a legal pronouncement is heard.

“This is an unfortunate incident and highlights the dangers of the cybercrime in the art world”, says Emma Ward, the Managing Director of Dickinson.

She added that cyber incidents such as the one between Dickinson and Museum should create awareness of cyber threats in the art world and should prove as a learning point for the art community.

Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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