Leicester City Ransomware Crisis: INC Ransom’s Flashy Extortion Fiasco

Caught in a digital heist, Leicester City Council grapples with INC Ransom’s cheeky “flashing” tactics—flirting with data disaster, but with a British stiff upper lip, services resurrect like techy phoenixes. Stay tuned for the next thrilling installment of “As the Cyber World Turns.”

Hot Take:

Looks like the cyber goons at INC Ransom are trying to play a real-life game of ‘Simon Says’ with Leicester City Council—flash a threat, take it back, and see if the council jumps. But Leicester, bracing its best British stiff upper lip, seems to be giving the digital extortionists the cold shoulder. Will this be a showdown of wills or just another episode in the ransomware reality show? Grab your popcorn, folks!

Key Points:

  • INC Ransom claims a cyberattack on Leicester City Council, allegedly stealing 3 TB of data.
  • The council experienced a widespread system shutdown on March 7, with services now mostly restored.
  • INC Ransom is known for “flashing” victims on their leak sites to pressure ransom negotiations.
  • Leicester City Council is tight-lipped on whether data was breached, citing ongoing criminal investigations.
  • INC Ransom also targeted NHS Dumfries and Galloway, leaking sensitive patient data online.

Need to know more?

Leicester's Cyber Siege

It's been a veritable Dickensian tale of woe for Leicester City Council as they've wrestled with the digital Scrooge of INC Ransom. After the council's IT had a techno tantrum on March 7, forcing a shutdown that lasted longer than a British queue for tea, they've managed to get most of their services back on their digital feet. Apparently, the cyber attackers wanted to play an April Fools' joke nobody found funny by claiming responsibility and then 'poof'—the claim vanished like a ghost in the night. The council's response? A resolute "no comment" on the data breach drama.

Digital Extortion Etiquette 101

For those not versed in ransomware etiquette, "flashing" is the latest fad where cybercriminals post a leak threat then yank it away faster than you can say "data breach." It's like ding-dong ditch, but with potentially millions at stake. INC Ransom used this tactic in a bid to get Leicester City Council to cough up the cash—or at least start talking. But it seems Leicester isn't playing ball, and the criminals are left holding the bag...of potentially useless stolen data.

The Council's Countermove

Despite the cyber shenanigans, Leicester City Council is bouncing back like a Brit on Boxing Day. They've got their online services humming again and have even resumed council-run recreation and library Wi-Fi services. Director Andrew Shilliam is all apologies for the inconvenience and is doling out thanks like they're going out of fashion. As for the backlog of emails and requests? That's a problem for next week's Andrew.

A History of Misdeeds

This isn't INC Ransom's first rodeo. They've previously gone after NHS Dumfries and Galloway, with a penchant for nabbing a whopping 3 TB of data here, a treasure trove of sensitive information there. And they're not just hoarding it; they're showing it off online like a proud parent at a baby's first piano recital. It's a data dumpster fire, with patient details laid bare for all to see.

Phishing with Council Bait

If you thought your council tax number was safe, think again. INC Ransom could be sitting on a goldmine of personal info perfect for phishing expeditions. UK residents might soon face a barrage of fake council tax demands, proving that when it comes to cybercrime, the pen (or in this case, the keyboard) can be mightier than the sword. So, keep your wits about you and your personal info closer because the cyber boogeymen are getting craftier by the minute.
Tags: data breach, double extortion, Leicester City Council, Municipal Cybersecurity, NHS Scotland, Phishing Threats, ransomware attack