• Suspected Ransomware Attacks Garmin

    In today's day and age, everything is managed online and all the data is also stored online. Whatever we do, be it booking a table for dining out, or making an online transaction for some money to be sent to one of our friends, it is all done online. While doing any activity, every website keeps a track of the data transferred by us. These are the little footprints we leave behind when we do some activity online. This is generally the data regarding our identity and the device/browser we used, and also the mode of transaction we used to complete that activity. And most of us also think that there's nothing very important in the data transmitted by us. I have always pressed the issue of the importance of cyber-security on my blogs and with this, I intend to educate as many people as possible to that people could understand the importance of data and try to keep it as safe as possible.


    Just a day ago, a major avionics manufacturer, Garmin was attacked by a ransomware. This is not a confirmed news, but sources say that a leaked email had a piece of information about the organization getting attacked by a ransomware. Garmin also tweeted yesterday that they are experiencing an outage that affects Garmin Connect, and as a result, the Garmin Connect website and mobile app are down. They also tweeted that their customer support centers are down too for the time being. Very recently, Twitter was also attacked by some cryptocurrency enthusiasts and they used the accounts of many celebrities asking for a donation. But the question arises, what is ransomware?


    Ransomware is malicious software that may transmit into a computer system through infected emails, attachments, and files. It usually attacks its victims, by tricking them that their system has suffered a data breach, and to get a hold of the data again, they need to make a payment some money to get it accessible again. Ransomware also sometimes lock a user out of their system by locking the screen with the help of a password set up remotely or encrypting the data which was in such a system, so that they could disable the user from getting the access to his data.


    Why is Ransomware a threat? I am writing this blog because just a day before Garmin's app to assist pilots got attacked by one such ransomware. It blocked the pilots' ability to file for a flight plan, and the entire website, Flygarmin was down blocking the pilots to access it. Garmin's Connext Services were also down, resulting in the outage of the weather data, CMC and position reports.


    Criminals are targeting more and more large corporations and I think that is because of the availability of large chunks of data. Very recently, car manufacturer, Honda was also attacked by one such ransomware. Attackers also misrepresent themselves as customer support services such as DHL, FedEx, or UPS, which can further intimidate the people into paying up a sum of money to get their data safe.


    There are many ways you can keep your data safe. One such way is by installing the security updates of the operating system regularly. Users may also protect their system by using a good quality anti-virus or anti-ransomware software, which are easily available in the market and are easy to install too. You should also have your IT team secure your firewalls so that they may protect the system from any potential attack. Lastly, it is very important to take regular backups of personal and official data so that no one can trick you into paying to get access to your data.


    How does Absolaw help? Absolaw can help the people who have suffered or might have suffered a data breach by examining the documents about such individuals and compiling a notification list of the data points which might have suffered a breach too. We, at Absolaw, understand the importance of personal data and concur with the GDPR elements, so that a good quality notification may be ensured.


    On a broader note, I hope the situation with Garmin gets resolved soon and all the services associated with it will be up and running soon. I also hope that the young generation should start taking the importance of personal data more seriously, so that they may prepare themselves on how to protect any such data, both offline and online.