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Tuesday, 13 October 2020 17:11

Facility services provider Spotless suffers ransomware attack Featured

Facility services provider Spotless suffers ransomware attack Pixabay

Integrated facility services provider Spotless has been hit by ransomware, the company has confirmed.

The firm has operations in both Australia and New Zealand through various in-house brands, according to Wikipedia. Its headquarters are in Fitzroy, a suburb of Melbourne.

Spotless, which is owned by the Downer Group, provides services to the defence, business, senior living, education, government, healthcare resources, water, power, transport industries and stadia, venues and leisure sectors.

Contacted for comment, a spokesman said on Tuesday: "We confirm we are investigating suspicious activity involving unauthorised access to a number of Spotless servers.

"We have engaged experts and believe it is linked to ransomware.

"We have restricted access to a number of Spotless servers and have notified the Australian Cyber Security Centre and NZ National Cyber Security Centre.

"We have enacted business continuity plans that allow us to continue the delivery of our services.

"At this stage, we have no evidence that any data has been impacted."

None of the major ransomware groups has listed Spotless among their victims as yet.

The normal process is for attackers to give victims time to pay the ransom and then post information about the victim online if they refuse to agree to the ransom demand.

Commenting on the incident, Mark Lukie, sales engineer manager for APAC at Barracuda, said: "There's been a spike in ransomware attacks on Australian businesses this year, taking advantage of the pandemic to wreak havoc on organisations.

"The attack surface is much greater now that so many workers are still working from home, where they may lack the same level of email protection they would get in an office.

"It highlights the need to for organisations to take a more proactive approach to cyber security training, transforming employees from a security liability into a line of defence."

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Sam Varghese

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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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