Despite all the good technology has done, it also brings the risk of cybercrime. A media and entertainment law firm that represents major artists like Madonna, Bruce Springsteen and Lady Gaga is feeling the burn as reports were released that the company’s internal systems were hacked exposing a wealth of sensitive data.
Photo Credit: Latestly
Reports claim that the firm, Grubman Shire Meisalas & Sacks was attacked by a hacker group known as ‘REvil’ or ‘Sodinokibi’. The hackers were successful in accessing 756 gigabytes of sensitive documents relative to the careers of famous entertainers like Madonna, Bruce Springsteen Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj, Christina Aguilera, Idina Menzel, Run DMC, Mary J.Blige, Mariah Carey, Bette Midler, Cam Newton, Jessica Simpson, Priyanka Chopra and Ella Mai.
Of the attack, a rep for the firm had this to say “We can confirm that we’ve been victimized by a cyberattack. We have notified our clients and our staff. We have hired the world’s experts who specialize in this area, and we are working around the clock to address these matters.”
The stolen data includes contact information such as emails and phone numbers, contracts, nondisclosure agreements and personal correspondence. The hackers posted some of this material they had stolen on a dark web forum that allows users to hide their identities through encryption. The documents posted included an excerpt from a contract used for Madonna’s Madame X tour.
Emisoft threat analyst Brett Callow reports that the posting of this evidence is meant to be a form of blackmail. The hackers are letting the law firm know that if they don’t pay a certain amount, they will continue releasing the documents. Exactly how much the hackers are asking for is unknown.
Callow went on to address the seriousness of cybercrime, particularly in relation to its effects on law firms. “Attacks on law firms are particularly concerning due the sensitivity of the information they hold,” he said. “For example, previous incidents have resulted in details veterans’ PTSD claims and child neglect cases being published online. And all of this information was posted on the clear web where it could be easily accessed by anybody with an internet connection.”
He went on to estimate that U.S. organizations paid more than $1.3 billion in ransom demands last year. “Globally, the annual cost is almost $170 billion,” he added.
At this point the Grubman Shire Meisalas & Sacks firm has all but shut down its web site. Anyone who searches up the site will see that it features a company logo and nothing else.
These hackers have definitely hit below the belt and it is hopeful that their identities will be revealed and that justice is served. In the meantime, do what you can to make sure your online information is protected.