UK Internet provider TalkTalk hit by ‘significant, sustained cyberattack’

23 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Hackers send ransom note over TalkTalk customer data.

TalkTalk has said it had received a ransom demand from somebody claiming to be behind the cyber attack on the British broadband company on Wednesday, which involved the possible theft of the details of 4 million customers. “It is hard for me to give you very much detail, but yes, we have been contacted by, I don’t know whether it is an individual or a group, purporting to be the hacker,” chief executive Dido Harding told the BBC on Friday. The telecoms giant is investigating whether credit card and bank details were taken in Wednesday’s attack, the third time this year that it has been the victim of a cybercrime. She has apologised to customers for the third cyber-attack affecting the telecommunications firm in the past 12 months but said the breaches were “completely unrelated”.

Well, you’ve got to say that we weren’t and obviously we will be looking back and reviewing that extremely seriously.” Harding said Wednesday’s attack on TalkTalk’s systems should be treated as a crime. “Whether it is the US government, Apple, a host of companies, cybercrime is something we all need to get better at defending ourselves against,” she said. The Metropolitan police cybercrime unit has launched an investigation into the breach amid speculation that the attackers could be Islamic extremists or extortionists. The claim could not be verified, but Culley pointed out that a group calling themselves “TalkTalk Hackers” published what they claimed were a sample of dozens of email addresses and national security numbers as proof of the attack. It said: “We will teach our children to use the web for Allah … your hands will be covered in blood … judgement day is soon.” Culley said the attack was a matter of national security.

He said: “By the very nature of who TalkTalk are, they are [a] communications service provider, they are also part of the UK’s critical national infrastructure, so this is a concern not just for the police but the security services.” Professor Peter Sommer, from De Montfort University’s cyber security unit, told the BBC’s Today programme: “It seems to me the suggestion that these are Islamic terrorists who are perpetrating it is unlikely, not impossible. “One has to look at what is probably the most likely outcome. The other one is just to get hold of the credit card information, get hold of the personal information.” Scotland Yard said: “There have been no arrests and inquiries are ongoing.

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