How this business enlisted a “cyber angel” to pay a criminal’s ransom after losing 65 weeks’ worth of data

An Australian business has coughed up and paid $5000 in digital currency Bitcoin to a cyber criminal after its servers were compromised by ransomware that caused it to lose a combined 65 weeks’ worth of data.

The Outdoor Media Association’s (OMA) chief executive Charmaine Moldrich took to the organisation’s blog to discuss the cyber attack that occurred last month, compromising all of its computers, with the last off-site backup being more than six weeks old.

“We were hacked at 10.25pm. No alarms went off, no alerts were sent until the first team member arrived to work at 7.30am to find a hacker’s ransom message on all our computers,” Moldrich wrote.

“By this stage the ransomware had encrypted every file on our server including our back up.”

Ransomware is a common form of cyber attack in which criminals encrypt files on a user’s computer and servers, demanding a significant payment before the files

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