Parliament’s IT system was hacked last Friday, compromising the email accounts of nearly 1% of the 9,000 users of the system according to the latest reports.
Remote Access Disabled After the sustained cyber attack, which some media commentators have already blamed on a state-sponsored attack by Russia ( North Korea and Iran have also been mentioned ), remote access to the emails of MPs, peers, and their staff was disabled in order to safeguard the system.
As well as the disruption caused by the UK government by the attack, one anxiety is that some of the information stolen by the attackers could lead to blackmail attempts.
It has been reported that the attackers were looking for accounts with weak passwords as these would give them the best chance of gaining quick access.
The parliamentary email system was shut down and MPs were also prevented from being able to access their email accounts remotely from outside of Westminster while the Cyber Attack was investigated.
Also, it has been reported that any individuals whose accounts were compromised during the attack have been contacted and investigations are now underway to determine whether any data has been lost.
Wanna cry This new attack goes hot on the heels of the WannaCry Cyber Attack in May in which ransomware infected the computers of an estimated 300,000 victims in 150 countries worldwide, many of the big, well-known businesses and organizations, including 16 health service organizations in the UK.
That attack has since been attributed to a North Korea-based hacking group known as Lazarus, the same group that targeted Sony Pictures with a hack in 2014 over the release of the film’ The Interview’ which satirized the North Korean leadership.
What Does This Cyber Attack Mean For Your Business?
Businesses need to take a range of measures to ensure that they are well defended against known cyber menaces, and prepared for the aftermath, should defences be breached with virus removal.
Preparations could include making sure that all the latest updates and patches are installed on systems and that anti-virus software is up to date, all important data is regularly and securely backed-up, all staff is trained to spot and deal correctly with potential threats, and workable Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plans are in place.
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