Security Market Segment LS
Wednesday, 08 July 2020 18:11

Gang uses Ako ransomware to hit Hamilton Brown creative design firm

Screenshot from the Ako site on the dark web. Screenshot from the Ako site on the dark web.

Cyber criminals have used the Ako ransomware to attack Windows systems at the Hamilton Brown creative design agency in the UK, and released data from the company on the dark web after a ransom note did not evoke any response.

The company, which is headquartered in London and has an office in Bristol, has several well-known clients.

Among them are JLL, AXA, Mace Group, Alvarez & Marsal, Cushman & Wakefield, Holman Fenwick Willan, Liberty Global, Charterhouse, Cinven, Xaxis, BDO, CBRE, BNP Paribas, Grant Thornton, Electoral Commission, Clearwater International, HCA Healthcare, Mount Anvil, Investec, NHS, PwC, HSBC, Korn Ferry, Osborne Clarke, Willis Tower Watson, Herbert Smith Freehills, Baker McKenzie, Hogan Lovells, Lend Lease and Crowe.

It provides services such as pitches and proposals, digital services, design and production, Microsoft Office solutions, brand positioning, brand guardianship, campaigns and training.

The information that has been released is in zipped form and is personal information about workers at the firm.

Ako is one of the growing number of ransomware families that are designed to exfiltrate information from systems that are attacked, before encrypting the data on-site and generating a ransom note.

The note gives information about how much and to whom the victim should pay in order to decrypt the files that have been encrypted. It also gives the victim a deadline to react.

If the victim does not respond, then the attackers begin releasing the stolen information in drips and drabs. In this particular case, they have threatened to release more data after another seven days.

iTWire has contacted Hamilton Brown for comment.

Subscribe to Newsletter here

WEBINAR 12 AUGUST - Why is Cyber Security PR different?

This webinar is an introduction for cyber security companies and communication professionals on the nuances of cyber security public relations in the Asia Pacific.

Join Code Red Security PR Network for a virtual conversation with leading cyber security and ICT journalists, Victor Ng and Stuart Corner, on PR best practices and key success factors for effective communication in the Asian Pacific cyber security market.

You will also hear a success story testimonial from Claroty and what Code Red Security PR has achieved for the brand.

Please register here by 11 August 2020 and a confirmation email, along with instructions on how to join the webinar will be sent to you after registration.

Aug 12, 2020 01:00 PM in Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney. We look forward to seeing you there!



It's all about Webinars.

These days our customers Advertising & Marketing campaigns are mainly focussed on Webinars.

If you wish to promote a Webinar we recommend at least a 2 week campaign prior to your event.

The iTWire campaign will include extensive adverts on our News Site and prominent Newsletter promotion and Promotional News & Editorial.

For covid-19 assistance we have extended terms, a Webinar Business Booster Pack and other supportive programs.

We look forward to discussing your campaign goals with you. Please click the button below.


Sam Varghese

website statistics

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.





Guest Opinion

Guest Interviews

Guest Reviews

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News