Olympus is the latest technology firm to be hit by BlackMatter Ransomware in a series of cyberattacks in recent times.
The Japanese tech giant confirmed this in a brief statement on Sunday saying the firm has commenced investigations into a potential cybersecurity threat that is currently affecting its African, Middle Eastern, and it’s European offices.
Olympus further explained in the statement that a team of forensic experts and a special response unit has been immediately tasked to resolve the situation after the firm discovered the suspicious activity.
As part of the ongoing investigations, the transfer of data has been suspended in all affected systems so as to contain the situation and avoid more damage. Relevant external partners of the firm have also been duly informed of the status and advised accordingly. Unconfirmed reports have claimed that the ransomware attack actually did happen some four long days before Olympus finally admitted to it yesterday. According to the reports, the ransomware attack happened in the early hours of September 8.
BlackMatter as we know it, is the successor of ransomware groups like REvil – famously known for the Kaseya attack of over 100 companies. Recall, that the attention of the U.S government was drawn by these incessant attacks making the government promise an intervention, should critical infrastructure be attacked again.
BlackMatter emerged in June this year, and over 40 cyberattacks have already been linked to the group. The way groups like BlackMatter typically operate is that they would steal data from the network of a company, and then encrypt such data. They would now approach that company, threatening to publish their files online should they fail to pay the ransom demanded to decrypt the files.
Olympus is a Japan-based manufacturer of optics and reprography products for the medical and life sciences fields.
And the worrisome part of this attack is that it took the company quite a long time to acknowledge the situation, especially as people still used its services over the weekend. Regardless of this, however, Olympus said that it is currently looking into the problem, trying to determine the extent of the issue, and will be issuing out more information and details as they surface.