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Wednesday, 03 June 2020 11:31

Ransomware group takes MyBudget name off site, reason unknown Featured

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Ransomware group takes MyBudget name off site, reason unknown Pixabay

The saga surrounding Australian money management firm MyBudget is yet to end, with the ransomware group which infiltrated its servers now removing the company's name from the site where it advertises the names of victims who have not acceded to its ransom demands.

The gang that had used the Mespinoza/Pysa Windows ransomware to attack MyBudget — a fact the company confirmed to iTWire on 29 May — had put up the company's name, with no data files below it at the time that story was published (graphic below).

But today, security sources have told iTWire that the attackers have now removed the company's name from their website.

iTWire contacted MyBudget to seek details on this development, but the company is yet to respond.

The company is also yet to say whether it will absolve clients of paying administration fees for the two weeks it was off the air.

The sources said that this removal of MyBudget's name from the Mespinoza/Pysa meant either that the company had paid a ransom or else said it would negotiate and asked for its name to be removed as a bargaining tactic.

mybudget2

Last week, MyBudget was listed on the Mespinoza/Pysa site.

"The problem with this is that, even if the ransom was paid, the company only has a pinky promise that the copy of the data will be deleted and not misused and that pinky promise is being made by criminals," the sources added.

MyBudget, a company that manages money for about 13,000 clients who are mostly from the not-so-wealthy ranks in Australia, went down on 9 May and stayed that way until 22 May.

The length of time it was offline could well indicate that it was not a single server that was under attack, but rather that the attackers were able to hit multiple servers.

MyBudget initially blamed unspecified malware and then changed its story to unspecified ransomware.

But when iTWire raised the issue on 29 May, the company finally came clean and admitted that the Mespinoza/Pysa ransomware had taken the servers offline.

MyBudget's clients pay a joining fee of $1100 and are then charged anything from $40 upwards a week.


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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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