Olympus a big Japanese company becomes victim of black matter ransomware

The Japanese company Olympus confirmed the detection of a ransomware incident affecting its networks. According to the report, the variant in question was identified as BlackMatter and could be related to other ransomware operations, including DarkSide and REvil, also known as Sodinokibi.

The company confirmed that the incident impacted its operations in Europe and the Middle East sometime last week. Olympus, a leading optical technology maker, says it is investigating the incident to determine its exact range.

Ransomware variants are a specific type of malicious software that restricts access to certain parts or files of the infected operating system and asks for a ransom in exchange for removing that restriction. These ransoms are usually for very high amounts and must be covered through cryptocurrency transactions.

As mentioned above, the attacking group was identified as BlackMatter, which operates as a ransomware as a service (RaaS) platform. As some users will recall, these kinds of operations are divided into ransomware developers and affiliates, who collaborate in order to reach more victims and split huge profits.

In response to the incident, Olympus mobilized a security team to disrupt the infection and begin identifying those responsible. No additional details about the attack have been revealed so far. Very little is also known about the scope of the attack on the company’s networks.

On the other hand, cybersecurity experts mention that BlackMatter is a hacking group that has shown steady growth, in addition to attracting more and more attention from law enforcement.

Ransomware attacks remain one of the top threats to tech companies, which are always exposed to infections stemming from attacks and employees unfamiliar with cybersecurity issues. As with other security risks, the best protection is prevention. 

To learn more about information security risks, malware variants, vulnerabilities and information technologies, feel free to access the International Institute of Cyber Security (IICS) websites.