In September 2018, Scottish beer maker Arran Brewery fell prey to a ransomware attack. The hackers demanded two bitcoins—worth around £10,000 in total at the time of the attack—in exchange for the decryption keys. However, the brewery didn't give in to the demands of the hackers, which led to it losing three months' sales data stored on its infected servers.
Before the attack, the brewery had advertised a job opening on its website for a credit control and finance assistant. The attackers took this advertisement and posted it on international recruitment sites, which led to a huge influx of emails from interested candidates. Amidst this, it appears that hackers also sent an email posing as a genuine job seeker. This email contained a virus as an attachment, so when an Arran Brewery employee opened the attachment, the ransomware virus spread across the company's network.
This ransomware infected the domain controller that is used to authenticate and provide access to employees. Apart from that, all file shares, including those that contained recent online backups, were also infected. The brewery has enlisted the help of an external IT consultant to clean up its network and restore data from offline backups.
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