US Business Insurance company pays $40 million to ransomware hackers

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CNA Financial that offers customized business insurance-related services across the United States has reportedly paid $40 million to hackers to free up its database from the encryption-driven file-encrypting malware.

 

According to a Bloomberg report, a ransomware attack crippled some of the computer servers of CNA Systems in March this year. As the insurance firm did not have a data continuity plan, its IT staff started to negotiate a deal with hackers.

 

After demanding $60 million on an initial note, the ransomware group spreading Hades malware, a derivative of Phoenix Locker accepted to lower the ransom to $40 million. And the staff of CNA Insurance who negotiated the deal accepted and paid the demanded ransom in Bitcoins.

 

If the payment made stands true then it can turn as the second-highest ransomware payment paid in 2021 in cryptocurrency. However, none of the reporting sources from the insurance firm have confirmed the news.

 

Note 1- UK Home Secretary Priti Patel has urged ransomware victims to stop paying the ransom as it not only encourages cyber crooks in launching more such attacks but also doesn’t guarantee a decryption key and an assurance that the hackers will not attack the same network again in future – only to make easy money.

 

Note 2- None of the policyholder data was compromised in the incident and this was confirmed in the recent investigation taken up by a forensic firm between April and May second week of this month.

 

Note 3- CNA stands as the 7th largest insurance company in the United States and is the only company known to provide insurance cover for property causalities for businesses and professionals in United States, Asia, Europe, and Canada.

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