OIL gets Rs 57cr ransom demand from cyber attacker
PSU major Oil India, which suffered a cyberattack disrupting its operations in Assam, has received a ransom demand of USD 75,00,000 (over Rs 57 crore) from the perpetrator, officials said on Wednesday.
A case was registered under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Information Technology Act, 2000, after the company lodged a complaint with the police.
The public sector undertaking OIL and the government exchequer have incurred a huge financial loss due to the cyberattack – ransomware, as the business through the IT system has been seriously affected, OIL Manager (Security) Sachin Kumar said in the police complaint.
The cyberattack took place on April 10 at OIL’s one of the workstations of the Geological and Reservoir department, but it was intimated by the IT department on Tuesday, he said.
“After their preliminary investigation, it came to their notice that OIL’s network, server and clients’ PCs are facing network outage.
“Further, it also came to their notice that cyberattacker has demanded USD 75,00,000 as a ransom through a note from the infected PC,” Kumar said.
The server, network and other related services of the company are affected, he added.
A senior Assam Police official in Dibrugarh district said they registered a case under the various sections of the IPC and IT Act, and started an investigation into the matter.
OIL Spokesperson Tridiv Hazarika told PTI from its field headquarters in Duliajan that the company is working on repairing the system in phases and “it will take time”.
“Our online systems are down and we are working offline. The drilling and production work has been unaffected. The data are being saved offline now and it will be uploaded later when the IT system will run again,” he said.
A senior official of the OIL’s pipeline headquarters at Narengi in Guwahati told PTI that they have shut down their entire network, although their system has not suffered any attack as of now.
“Our work is badly affected as we are fully dependent on the internet network. Our IT engineers are constantly monitoring the situation and they are fully prepared to thwart any cyberattack,” the official said on condition of anonymity