London Drugs right not to give into cybercriminals’ demands: expert

After the criminal group that targeted London Drugs released stolen employee data on Thursday, one cyber security expert believes the company was right not to give in to the criminals’ demands.

According to Emsisoft cyber threat analyst Brett Callow, it appears that the files leaked total “more than 300 gigabytes” in size, calling it a “huge, huge amount.”

“Unfortunately, incidents like this happen all the time,” said Callow. He added that in some cases, some of the data released is extremely sensitive.

LockBit, the perpetrators claiming to be behind the ransom — first posted Tuesday — had been demanding that London Drugs pay $25 million in exchange for the data stolen during the April cyberattack that shuttered stores for days.

The deadline was set for just before 1 p.m. Thursday, which is when the data was released to the dark web.

Callow said it’s hard to know how many organizations pay ransoms for stolen data because the deals are often made in secrecy.

“London drugs, I would say, made absolutely the right decision in refusing to pay. All they would have got in exchange for their money is a pinky promise from the cyber criminals — untrustworthy, bad-faith actors — that the data would be destroyed. There’s no reason to believe that they actually do that,” said Callow.

“In fact, there is ample evidence that they do not. Law enforcement was actually able to hack into LockBit’s infrastructure a couple of months ago. And they found data stolen from organizations that had actually paid to have that data deleted.”

Callow says that though he has seen examples of leaked data being misused, the risk for London Drugs may be over.

“Normally, it just sits there and nothing happens, which is a good thing for the individuals concerned. There is always a risk. The data is, however, quite easy to access.”

He said employees who have had their information leaked should not necessarily worry, saying it’s “alarmist” to think that anything will happen to the data.

Top Stories

Top Stories

Most Watched Today