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'Do not pay any ransom' - Criminal gangs are threatening business with cyber attacks

The PSNI says that a number of businesses in Northern Ireland have been targeted.

Image: Shutterstock/Daniel Jedzura

THE PSNI IS telling businesses across Northern Ireland not to cave to the demands of crime gangs that are targeting companies online.

Detectives at the force’s Cyber Crime Centre say that a “known online criminal group” is threatening companies with a cyber attack unless they pay a ransom demand.

Detective Chief Inspector Douglas Grant says that a number of companies have already been targeted and is advising other companies not to pay-up in the face of threats.

“The ransom demands to date have carried the threat of a cyber attack being inflicted on the company and this attack may take the form of a DDOS attack which may disrupt or shut down company web services or networks,” Grant says.

The PSNI adds that it is working with a number of other agencies on the attacks and is advising any targeted companies to contact authorities.

In advice to potential victims, the PSNI says:

Preserve any email communications. Record the date, time and details of any communications or network activity. Do not pay any ransom.

Read: 15-year-old arrested in relation to Talk Talk data theft released on bail >

Read: The government is thinking up new ways to stop you from being hacked >

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Rónán Duffy

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