Media intelligence and insights company Isentia Group Limited (ASX: ISD) has announced that its shares have been placed in a trading halt following a cyber security incident which disrupted services within its SaaS platform Mediaportal.
Isentia says it has been working closely with leading external cyber security specialists to assess the extent of the incident and the impact on its systems. The Company has also notified the Australian Cyber Security Centre.
Isentia’s CEO Ed Harrison said: “Isentia is taking urgent steps to contain the incident and conduct a full investigation into what happened and how to avoid a repeat occurrence in the future. Our priority is to restore full service as soon as possible but until that occurs, we have put processes in place to support our customers.”
According to Tim Mackey, Principal Security Strategist at Synopsys Software Integrity Group, “Ransomware attacks are on the rise, and for the attackers it’s likely comforting to learn that per IDC’s ANZ Ransomware Survey almost 1/3 of ANZ organisations hit by ransomware in the past two years paid the ransom. Unfortunately, when payment occurs, those monies are then available to create yet more innovative attacks, and potentially fund other criminal activity – a situation highlighted by the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control in an advisory last week.
“For businesses seeking to restore operations quickly, payment of the ransom may seem like an acceptable solution. Unfortunately, as the Toll Group found earlier this year, implementing IT improvements following one attack doesn’t preclude another successful attack. Defending against any type of malware requires a comprehensive plan that looks at human factors in addition to technologies. Importantly, the underlying threat models should take into account how an attacker might use the data they collect.
“In the case of Isentia, customers should look to change any credentials they’ve provided on the Isentia platform as well as to revoke any access tokens to media platforms Isentia was monitoring for them. Doing so could limit ongoing damage if Isentia customer data was exfiltrated during the attack.”