Ransomware attack causes major system outage at Pitney Bowes
Global shipping and mailing giant Pitney Bowes has announced that it recently suffered a major ransomware attack that caused a system outage, impacted customers’ access to their accounts, and also affected its SendPro Shipping Online platform in the UK.
The first announcement concerning the ransomware attack was made by Pitney Bowes at 5PM on Tuesday when it said that it had suffered a significant system outage that affected several of its products such as SendPro products, postage refill, and Your Account access.
The company said it suspected that the system outage was caused by a third-party attack on its systems. Two hours later, it updated its website to confirm that there had indeed been a malware attack on its systems and that it had activated its technical teams to restore its systems.
“Pitney Bowes was affected by a malware attack that encrypted information on some systems and disrupted customer access to our services. Upon discovery of the cyberattack, we immediately assembled our Enterprise Outage Response Team to address the situation. We continue to work with third party security experts to resolve the issues.
“A limited number of our products have some features that are impacted as a result of the systems outage (Mail360 Scans, MIPro Licensing). This system outage is affecting our Your Account access, Data fulfillment, and some of our Support pages. All of our systems are being closely monitored, and things may change, but at this point in time these systems are currently NOT working,” the company said.
Pitney Bowes yet to recover completely from the ransomware infection
While some services such as SendSuite Tracking (SST), SendSuite Tracking Online (SSTO) and Relay Hub are presently operational, the company’s clients are unable to refill postage or upload transactions on their mailing machine, and SendPro Shipping Online in the UK is also not operational as SendPro P devices cannot print shipping labels from the device.
Until the system outage is completely resolved, customers cannot top up their accounts with additional funds but can use SendPro products if they already have funds in their accounts.
Earlier today, Pitney Bowes issued a new update on its progress, stating that while som progress has been made, many of the affected services are still unoperational.
“We are providing an update on restoring the postage refill process. We are still experiencing issues although some progress has been made. Our teams are working hard to get this service back up and running asap. At this time we ask that you bear with us and we will issue new updates as soon as possible. Restoring your meter’s postage refill capability is our highest priority,” it said.
The company did not mention if it had identified the malware that had infiltrated its systems or if it had identified the perpetrators behind the cyber attack, but said that it will issue another update on its progress at 5PM today.
Ransomware attacks targeted several global giants this year
In June this year, Belgian aircraft equipment manufacturer ASCO was forced to shut down operations in Belgium, Germany, Canada, and the US after a ransomware attack crippled IT systems at its manufacturing plant in Zaventem, Belgium. The company was also forced to send around 1,000 of its 1,400 employees at the affected factories home due to the prolonged shutdown.
ASCO is among the world’s largest aircraft equipment manufacturers and supplies high-end aircraft equipment such as high lift devices, mechanical assemblies, and functional components to several global aviation giants such as Boeing, Airbus, Lockheed Martin, Bombardier Aerospace, and Embraer.
Earlier this year, a similar ransomware attack struck Norsk Hydro, one of the largest aluminium companies worldwide, forcing the company to switch to manual operations and take urgent steps to contain and neutralise the cyber attack. NorCERT (Norway’s National Cyber Security Centre) later confirmed that Norsk Hydro had suffered a LockerGoga ransomware attack whcih was combined with an attack n Active Directory (AD).
“The attack has impacted operations in several of the company’s business areas globally. IT systems in most business areas are impacted and Hydro is switching to manual operations where possible. Hydro’s power plants are running normally on isolated IT systems,” said Norsk Hydro.