What did Manchester United cyber attackers want? Club received ransom demands over breach
Following the news of the cyber attack on Manchester United last week, the club has not said if they received any ransom threats while being targeted. The attack forced the side to shut down their systems and say that they had indeed been hit by a "sophisticated attack", and that the problem was still causing a disruption. This comes after a Daily Mail report said the club was held ransom for millions of pounds by cybercriminals.
The report also added that the hackers still maintain their hold on the United after the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and confirmed they were helping the club resolve the issue. The security breach is believed to be more serious than initially feared as it was reported that the club was infected by Ransomware, a type of malware from cryptovirology that threatens to publish the victim's data or block access to it unless a ransom is paid.
While it is unclear who the perpetrators are and their demands, the NCSC revealed that last year, one of the EFL clubs were demanded a ransom of £5m ($5.9M), and United could pretty much have to spend £9m ($10.7M), £18m ($21.4) or two per cent of their total annual worldwide turnover as fines if the attack is found to have breached fans data protection. The club has assured this was not the case. In a statement, United said: "Following the recent cyber attack on the club, our IT team and external experts secured our networks and have conducted forensic investigations. This attack was by nature disruptive, but we are not currently aware of any fan data being compromised.
"Critical systems required for matches to take place at Old Trafford remained secure and games have gone ahead as normal. The club will not be commenting on speculation regarding who may have been responsible for this attack or the motives behind it," it added. According to BBC, the team's Champions League fixture went on as planned although there were a few administrative changes had to be made around the entry of the Old Trafford Stadium.
Emails have been down through the week and the report added there was recovery work being done to ensure the internal systems are safe. On the matches front, United face Southampton next in their Premier League fixture followed by a clash against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.