By Zaini Majeed for Republic World
In a shocking ‘virtual heist’ at a prestigious jewellery company, Russian hackers on Saturday, October 30 stole details of Hollywood stars and billionaire tycoons including Donald Trump, Oprah Winfrey, Tom Hanks, David Beckham, among many other prominent names.
According to several reports, the hackers conducted an online raid at Graff, a famous jewellery outlet, and one identified cybercriminal based near St. Petersburg compromised the personal information of the world’s most famous and influential people, as well as celebrities including Tom Hanks and Oprah Winfrey, UK’s Mirror reported earlier yesterday.
The criminal raid involves close to 600 Brits that are said to be among the victims. Russian hackers managed to leak as many as 69,000 confidential documents and other information on the dark web as they demanded millions in ransom from the London-based jewellery firm.
Another UK based network Mail reported that members of the Russian hacking gang Conti are suspected of the virtual heist. They are now asking the business to pay tens of millions of pounds in ransom money, supposedly in Bitcoins or jewellery. Of the compromised information, many of the credit notes, invoices and client lists from the business have been leaked.
But the information published on the dark web comprises just about 1% of the total stolen files, says the UK outlet. It quoted a former colonel in British military intelligence, Philip Ingram, as saying, “given the profile of the customer database, this is absolutely massive. This is going to bring the highest levels of international law enforcement down on the gang, and that’s going to give them a whole lot of headaches in trying to get the ransom paid and then get away with it.”
Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), who is capable of imposing penalties of up to 4% of company turnover told Mirror: “We have received a report from Graff Diamonds Ltd regarding a ransomware attack.”
Furthermore, he said, ”We will be contacting the organisation to make further enquiries in relation to the information that has been provided.” The jewellery firm Graff’s spokesperson said: “Regrettably we, in common with a number of other businesses, have recently been the target of a sophisticated – though limited – cyber-attack by professional and determined criminals.”