Perth-based Marketing Agency’s Data Destroyed by Hackers

Bernard Hastings | 12 Jul 2018

Perth-based Cyanweb Solutions, a digital marketing and web design agency was the target of a ‘criminal hacking incident’ last week, resulting in the loss of almost all client data.

The business has three-staff and provides services such as web design, online marketing, SEO and hosting to more than 500 clients. Although the hack was contained to one server, it resulted in the destruction of all client data as well as all backup data, effectively leaving the agency with little to no data left on their client’s projects.

Cyanweb Solutions issued a statement about the attack, “We highly suspect they were ‘professionals’, as at the time of the infiltration the server was being ‘overloaded’ (DDoS) by a highly suspicious range of sequential Swiss server IP addresses. Some Swiss servers are like Swiss bank accounts and are sometimes used by professional criminal organisations and other well-funded cyberterrorist groups.”

One of the key focal points of the attack was the distraction. As the company’s servers were being overloaded by thousands of IP addresses, the server admin was focusing on ensuring the website stayed online, though at the same time the attackers were using this distraction to infiltrate Cyanweb’s Servers and destroyed all but 12% of data.

Cheif executive of Cyanweb Solutions reached out to customers letting them know that the company was deeply sorry for the ‘worst-case scenario’ they’d experienced and that setting up email forwarding was advised.

The Aftermath

The company expressed that their main focus over the coming days will be to get ‘email flowing again’ and to move websites back online over the coming weeks. The bigger issue for the company was reaching out to clients who used their in-house service for email, as there was no longer a CyanWeb-based email to contact them with.

A further statement read “We understand you are upset, worried and some are getting angry. This has affected everyone badly and we are struggling ourselves to keep up and keep going. “We will not give up and will see this through. We are a three-person team facing the biggest disaster of our working lives.”

Customers of the business have begun notifying their clients via social media of the websites and emails being down, including automotive repair business ECUwest.

A minor investigation revealed that around 20 business hosted by Cyanweb were small businesses based in Perth, including designers, mechanics, photographers and even architects. All of their websites have been down since the weekend.

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