Major US Travel Company Paid Hackers $4.5 Million BTC Ransom

A major US travel company from Minneapolis paid hackers $4.5 million worth of BTC in a ransom attack which compromised sensitive data so let’s find out more in the bitcoin latest news.

One major US travel company just paid a sum worth $4.5 million worth of Bitcoin in order to regain access to encrypted company files. According to Reuters, the travel management company CWT pulls in annual revenues of $1.5 billion and now they paid hackers a sum worth 414 bitcoin in a response to a ransomware attack which led to the theft of sensitive company data and documents, leaving tens of thousands of company devices offline.

BTC Ransom

The attackers used ransomware technology dubbed Ragnar to encrypt company files and made them inaccessible to the company’s employees according to the Reuters reports. CWT paid the ransom to decrypt the files and regain access to about two terabytes of information including employee data and other financial documents. The company said:

 “We can confirm that after temporarily shutting down our systems as a precautionary measure, our systems are back online and the incident has now ceased. While the investigation is at an early stage, we have no indication that personally identifiable information/customer and traveller information has been compromised.”

According to Reuters, the hackers demanded $10 million in a Bitcoin ransom but the company managed to talk them down saying they are restrained to the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse to not be able to pay the entire sum. Ransomware is a huge problem for international companies as they cost billions per year. Since bitcoin was created, cryptocurrencies became the main tool for this type of cyber extortion as an article from The Journal found that about $259 million was captured in ransom attacks between 2013 and 2017.

CWT travel company

As it was reported, In the NCSC 28-page report titled (The Cyber Threat to Sports Organizations), ransomware attackers will not aim for the English Football league. The security center is a UK government institution that provides support and advice for public and private sector entities on how to avoid security threats. The institution is based in London and started operating in 2016. According to the NCSC reports, the English Football League team became the latest victim of a cyber-attack as the hackers encrypted the corporate and security systems and demanded a ransom of 400 bitcoin that is worth about $.8 million in order to release the decryption key.

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