Kia Motors allegedly suffers a ransomware attack

Hackers demanding a $20 million ransom to release a decryptor

Kia sign with a red background

Kia Motors America has been hit with a $20 million ransom by the hackers behind the DoppelPaymer ransomware.

The attack has taken the car manufacturer’s systems offline, and the gang has threatened to leak sensitive information if the company didn’t pay up. So far, the attack has seen a nationwide outage of internal websites used by dealers. Kia Motors 

A ransom note sent to Kia’s parent company, Hyundai Motor America, and seen by Bleeping Computer said to prevent the data leak and receive a decryptor, the company must pay the hackers 404 bitcoins (approximately $20 million). If Kia fails to pay, the ransom increases to 600 bitcoins (roughly $30 million).

According to reports, DoppelPaymer hackers haven’t said what data they’ve stolen.

Kia Motors America denied that it suffered a ransomware attack but did admit it was “experiencing an extended systems outage.”

Sam Curry, chief security officer at Cybereason, told ITPro if news reports are accurate, Kia Motors has long since passed the panic mode in dealing with a massive ransomware attack that has affected operations for more than five days.

“From afar, it appears the attackers have taken Kia Motors to its knees. Think about the scale of the problem for a company of this size with tens of thousands of employees and thousands of dealerships. Every additional hour and day they are incapacitated is costing the company tens of millions of dollars that will not be recouped,” Curry said.

Natalie Page, threat intelligence analyst at Talion, told ITPro DoppelPaymer is a problematic strain we’ve seen successfully infiltrate numerous large-scale global organizations recently. It’s infamous for its initial immense ransom demands, often negotiated to a much smaller amount if the organization chooses to pay.

“Unfortunately for Kia there is no guarantee that if the ransom is paid, DopplePaymer’s operators shall not leak any sensitive data,” she said. “Whichever eventuality the company selects, as stressful as the situation will currently be for Kia, for the salvation of the company’s reputation the priority going forward needs to be their clients and shareholders. Communication is key.”

Featured Resources

B2B under quarantine

Key B2C e-commerce features B2B need to adopt to survive

Download now

The top three IT pains of the new reality and how to solve them

Driving more resiliency with unified operations and service management

Download now

The five essentials from your endpoint security partner

Empower your MSP business to operate efficiently

Download now

How fashion retailers are redesigning their digital future

Fashion retail guide

Download now

Recommended

The top 12 password-cracking techniques used by hackers
Security

The top 12 password-cracking techniques used by hackers

29 Jul 2021
Colonial Pipeline hack spurred copycat attacks on other oil and gas companies
hacking

Colonial Pipeline hack spurred copycat attacks on other oil and gas companies

29 Jul 2021
Study finds companies are mishandling cyber security recruitment
cyber security

Study finds companies are mishandling cyber security recruitment

28 Jul 2021
What is the Computer Misuse Act?
Policy & legislation

What is the Computer Misuse Act?

28 Jul 2021

Most Popular

The benefits of workload optimisation
Sponsored

The benefits of workload optimisation

16 Jul 2021
RMIT to be first Australian university to implement AWS supercomputing facility
high-performance computing (HPC)

RMIT to be first Australian university to implement AWS supercomputing facility

28 Jul 2021
Samsung Galaxy S21 5G review: A rose-tinted experience
Mobile Phones

Samsung Galaxy S21 5G review: A rose-tinted experience

14 Jul 2021