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Sweden’s Minister of Defense comments on the hacker attack on Coop

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The ransomware attack, which may have affected more than a thousand companies worldwide, is receiving increasing attention. The Minister of Defense, Peter Hultqvist, is now commenting on the current situation.

  • Devastating consequences if the same attack is carried out by a state actor
  • Can knock out access to food and medicine
  • Indicates problems with outsourcing of certain services

Read more: Russian hacker group may be responsible for the Coop attack

We are extremely dependent on today’s vulnerable technology

In a statement to SVT Nyheter, Peter Hultqvist says that he takes the situation very seriously. He also says that companies must be prepared for being exposed to new attacks.
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The fact that a group of hackers can hit so many companies so hard at the same time is a societal problem that is gaining increasing proportions in step with the increasing digitalisation.

We are in many ways completely or very dependent on today’s technology. And when ransomware attacks hits so hard on companies like Coop and Apotek Hjärtat this turns out to be a very serious problem as in the worst case you can neither buy food nor medicine.

In this case, the attack appears to have been carried out by an independent Russian hacker group. But what happens if a state actor tries the same thing? Then it can go really, really bad on a completely different level.

Read more: Ransomware attack affects Coop, SJ and Apotek Hjärtat

Companies need to think about the consequences of outsourcing

The problem with the latest hacker attack that affected Coop, SJ and Apotek Hjärtat, among others, is rooted in the fact that they are linked to the Irish company Kaseya.

When Kaseya’s system was compromised, hackers were likely given a direct route to all or many affiliated companies that used their services. Which caused the ransomware attack to spread maximally.

Here, Minister of Defense Peter Hultqvist believes that companies must think through the consequences of outsourcing.

As long as there is money to be made and the systems continue to allow this type of broad attack, companies cannot sit quietly in the boat. It is important to constantly work proactively and improve their services and IT systems.
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The question is how far it will go and when the next big attack will take place.

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