TalkTalk attack: government urged to do more on cyber​​crime

24 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Accounts raided in TalkTalk hack.

A leading business group has urged the government to take more action on cybercrime after hackers seized the personal information and bank details of up to 4 million TalkTalk customers. Hilary Foster, a barristers’ practice manager from Surbiton, Surrey, discovered £600 had gone from her account yesterday morning, leaving her overdrawn.Shares in British broadband provider TalkTalk were hit as it said it had received a ransom demand from an unidentified party claiming responsibility for a cyber attack that may have led to the theft of personal data from its more than four million customers. Oliver Parry, the Institute of Directors’ senior corporate governance adviser, told the BBC that police should make cybercrime an urgent priority, but added that companies “are ultimately responsible for protecting their customers’ data”.

I am really, really angry TalkTalk found out about this on Wednesday and didn’t tell customers until a day later.” Yesterday we reported that the internet terrorists carried out a “significant and sustained cyber attack” on the British broadband company and sent the boss a ransom message. There have been questions about how well TalkTalk secured its customers’ data after Harding admitted that she did not know whether details including names, addresses and bank account numbers were encrypted.

Mum-of-two Donna Kinnear, 43, told yesterday how an attempt to take funds from her bank account was only thwarted because Santander became suspicious and blocked it. A message posted on the internet by the hackers said: “We Have Made Our Tracks Untraceable Through Onion Routing, Encrypted Chat Messages, Private Key Emails, Hacked Servers. At the time Ms Harding said: “I personally received a contact from someone purporting, as I say I don’t know whether they are or are not, to be the hacker looking for money.” Parry said: “The risks need to be reviewed regularly by the board of directors, who must ensure they know where the potential threats are coming from and are prepared in case the worst happens. “The UK is a world leader in the digital economy, so we urge the government and companies to work together to make us the world leader in countering the scourge of cybercrime.” Professor Mark Skilton, an IT consultant and academic at Warwick Business School, said: “Large-scale data theft is increasingly big business for professional cybercriminals. “The value of personal identity data records and account details is increasingly high as it can be used in masquerading identity to commit theft of other data; or give direct access to personal bank account money and fraudulent transactions.” Claims by customers that TalkTalk had covered up the seriousness of the attack should be investigated, said Keith Vaz, chairman of the home affairs select committee.

He told the Daily Telegraph: “Suggestions that TalkTalk has covered up both the scale and duration of this attack are alarming and unacceptable and must be thoroughly investigated. When such sensitive data as bank details have been compromised, companies have a duty to warn customers immediately.” A spokesman said: “We haven’t been covering up anything. A group calling itself “TalkTalk Hackers” published what it claimed was a sample of dozens of email addresses and other personal data on the Pastebin website.

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