Haven’t Received Your Packages as of Late? Blame Ransomware!

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An interesting article came across my desk yesterday, posted by Zdnet, which centred around how deliveries across Australia have been delayed recently.  Now many would figure that it was weather related or something similar as we have seen the news articles of how wildfires are still raging across the country creating havoc.  However, in this case, it was not Mother Nature, but the work of hackers that was causing delays.

Australian transport and logistics company, Toll Group  was hit by a targeted ransomware attack last Friday (now being blamed on a new variant of the”Mailto” or “Kokoklock” ransomware), infecting as many as 1000 servers.  This led to the company having to immediately isolate and disable various systems in order to limit the spread and effects of the attack.  By Monday, the company, which employs over 40,000 workers, had to shut down a number of systems, including several of its customer-facing applications.  Thankfully, although Toll Group does not believe any personal data has been lost from its systems, the incident has meanwhile resulted in the company having to revert to manual processes in order to clear the backlog of undelivered packages that the ransomware had caused. Toll Group’s update to its customers can be seen here.  Fortunately, Toll’s customers are able to continue to access the company’s services across a large part of its global network; however, the company has had to increase its staff in order to help with the continued backlog that the ransomware caused.

While Toll Group battles through the effects of ransomware infiltrating its systems, this need not have happened.  Wedge recently worked with one of the world’s fastest growing global logistics companies (PGL) to prevent exactly what occurred with Toll Group.  Based out of Texas, PGL transports over 250,000 tons of air freight annually.  One of the company’s top priorities is ensuring its customers’ confidential data while providing its end-to-end shipping, transportation and logistics services.  Like in the Toll Group case, with the critical nature of its freight and custom-clearance services, along with its 24/7 package tracking, PGL cannot afford to have any system downtime.  

As such, PGL worked with Wedge and deployed the Wedge Absolute Real-time Protection (WedgeARP) orchestrated threat management platform into its main data centre in order to eliminate malicious attacks to its on-premises and cloud infrastructure.  With WedgeARP’s embedded artificial neural network, each of PGL’s locations are protected from all threats, in real-time, with ransomware, APTs, backdoors and other never-before-seen malware being detected and BLOCKED before they can reach any endpoints.

”We cannot afford any downtime whatsoever if we are going to succeed in this very competitive industry. If we should ever get hacked, our competitors would eat our lunch. That’s why we are always looking for proven solutions to keep us several steps ahead of potential attacks. WedgeARP has truly shown its value to us in this respect, blocking several zero-day attacks that our other solutions didn’t even detect! It’s amazing to me that we’re getting thorough malware protection from a solution that has introduced literally no performance degradation into any of our systems and services.” 

-PGL IT Director, Steven Calton II

In PGL’s case, WedgeARP’s AI engine was able to detect and block several advanced threats and never-before-seen malware that the company’s existing firewall and UTM solutions did not catch.  With large-scale security implementation across its offices worldwide, WedgeARP provides effective real-time threat management services through its orchestrated threat management platform that incorporates the industry’s best-of-breed solutions; all managed through a single pane of glass.  Had Toll Group utilized the WedgeARP solution, perhaps they would not be facing the issues that they are currently dealing with.

If your organization is struggling to find a solution that will protect its valuable customer database and customer facing systems, drop us a line at: info@wedgenetworks.com.  Wedge provides a FREE 90 day trial of its Wedge Advanced Malware Blocker (WedgeAMB) that runs on the WedgeARP platform.  Attacks like the one that hit the Toll Group CAN be prevented!

About Wedge Chief Scientist

Husam Kinawi, Chief Scientist Dr. Kinawi has a PhD and MSc in Computer Science from the Universities of Calgary, Canada and London, UK. In 1997, he co-founded Mpower Technologies Inc., a wireless telecommunications software company. In 1999, Dr. Kinawi co-founded ActiveIq.com (NASDAQ: AIQT), a Boston-based e-Business applications firm. Dr. Kinawi has over seventeen years of research and development experience working with industry leaders such as Newbridge (Alcatel), Siemens, United Technologies, and Apple in the areas of distributed information systems, embedded applications and wireless Internet solutions. Dr. Kinawi has also spoken at several major conferences, published several research papers, and is the holder of several patents in the area of mobile and wireless devices.
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