A ransomeware attack has forced a London-based architectural firm, Zaha Hadid Architects, to bring its network offline, disrupting remote operations that had been instituted during the Covid-19 crisis.

Cyber criminals attempted to extort money after breaking into the firm’s servers and stealing confidential information. The firm alerted police after finding messages on its server saying internal company data had been encrypted and would only be released if it negotiated a ransom settlement with the hacker. The message included screenshots of hacked payroll and cash book information.

Although the firm’s data was backed up, it is unknown how much information has been stolen. Therefore, it is possible that the ransom demands may continue in the future.

A spokesperson for Zaha Hadid Architects told Architects Journal, “With all our 348 London-based staff working from home during this pandemic and cyber criminals poised to exploit the situation, we strongly advise the architectural community to be extremely cautious.”

This is yet another example of a smaller business being targeted by unscrupulous cyber criminals, and points to the need for companies of all sizes to invest in cyber security precautions and training. For more on what your company can do visit the Security & Compliance page on our website at www.tech-adv.com.