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Wednesday, 20 May 2020 10:53

Sydney sports store Instore hit by Windows REvil ransomware Featured

Sydney sports store Instore hit by Windows REvil ransomware Pixabay

Sydney sports specialty store chain Instore has been hit by the REvil ransomware that attacks Windows systems and a limited set of data from the company has been published on the dark web by the attackers.

Insport has 17 stores in Sydney and is one of the larger companies in its sector.

The fact that data from Instore has been put online indicates that the company has not responded to the initial ransom demand from the attackers.

When REvil is used to attack a Windows system, the malware first exfiltrates the data to a site controlled by the attackers. After that, the data is encrypted and a ransom note generated.

This is a relatively new tactic adopted by ransomware gangs, though there are now at least seven other groups which adopt the same tactic. Apart from REvil, these are Maze, DoppelPaymer, Ragnar Locker, Nefilim, NetWalker, Clop and Ako.


A screenshot of the data leaked by the REvil gang. Names have been redacted.

If the victim refuses to pay up, the attackers publish the exfiltrated data online as a means of putting pressure on the victim to pay up.

Among the Instore data put online are customer lists, accounts statements, bank statements and employees' leave entitlements.

REvil is also known as Sodinokibi and was first spotted in April last year.

iTWire has contacted Instore for comment.

Ransomware researcher Brett Callow, who works for the New Zealand-headquartered security firm Emsisoft, told iTWire that ransomware incidents had morphed into data breaches and represented a risk not only to the target company, but also to its customers and business partners.

"Too many incidents are attributable to basic security shortcomings such as failing to patch in a timely manner," he said. "Companies must do more to protect both their own data and the data with which they are entrusted."

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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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