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Tuesday, 17 August 2021 10:17

Accenture denies any impact from LockBit ransomware hit Featured

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Accenture denies any impact from LockBit ransomware hit Pixabay

Attackers from the LockBit ransomware group have threatened to leak more data within a day that they claim they have stolen from global services provider Accenture, allegedly through an insider.

On 12 August, well-known British security researcher Kevin Beaumont tweeted that the attackers had already started leaking encrypted data claimed to be from Accenture.

However, the company, which has nearly 570,000 employees worldwide and is valued at US$43 billion, claims that it has suffered no impact to its systems or those of its clients through the attack.

Like most other ransomware, LockBit only affects Microsoft's Windows operating system.

On its website on the dark web, the LockBit gang mocked Accenture, saying: "These people are beyond privacy and security. I really hope that their services are better than what I saw as an insider. If you're interested in buying some databases reach us."

Security firm Cyble said in a tweet that the attackers had claimed to have stolen about six terabytes of data and were seeking US$50 million as ransom.

Asked for comment, a company spokesperson told iTWire: "Through our security controls and protocols, we identified irregular activity in one of our environments.

"We immediately contained the matter and isolated the affected servers. We fully restored our affected systems from back-ups. There was no impact on Accenture's operations, or on our clients' systems."

However, the spokesperson neither denied nor confirmed the alleged theft of data.

Asked for his take on the incident, seasoned ransomware researcher Brett Callow of the New Zealand-headquartered firm Emsisoft, said: "Claims made by ransomware gangs should be assumed to be false. They are, to quote an esteemed industry colleague, lying bastards.

"While it's unusual for them to falsely claim to have attacked an organisation, it's not at all unusual for them to overstate both the amount of data exfiltrated and its sensitivity.

"Working out what happened in the aftermath of a ransomware attack is not always easy and can require a multi-week forensic investigation. The gangs often attempt to use this period of uncertainty to their advantage by claiming to have obtained more information, and more sensitive information, than they actually did."

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Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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