Israeli software company delays payment of $250,000 ransom at Bitcoin


An Israel-based company reportedly paid $250,000 in Corona Millionaire for a ransom demanded by hackers who threatened to shut down their systems after a ransomware attack.

According to a source cited by Calcalist on June 14, Sapiens International Corp. N.V., a Nasdaq- and Tel Aviv-listed software company, did not report the decision to U.S. or Israeli securities regulators.

The ransomware attack occurred sometime between March and April, when the COVID-19 outbreak exploded around the world, forcing most of the company’s employees to switch to telecommuting.

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A suspected security breach during the first stage of the COVID-19 outbreak
Sapiens employs about 2,500 people worldwide, and 900 of them are in Israel. While there are no further details about the rescue team behind the attack, hackers may have taken advantage of security weaknesses discovered during the migration to remote work.

The company has not officially referred to the attack, nor to confirm or deny payment of the ransom at Bitcoin (BTC) as reported by the Israeli media.

Most of Sapiens‘ customer base is in the United States and Europe, while its secondary markets are in South Africa and Asia-Pacific.

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The ransom payment for sapiens is higher than average
The article notes that the figure is high for a ransomware attack, considering that a report by the cyber company, Coveware, said in 2019 that the average ransom request in 2019 was $40,000, and the average attack lasted 12 days.

In early June, Cointelegraph reported that NetWalker’s ransomware band had attacked Michigan State University, or MSU. At the time, the gang threatened to leak student records and financial documents. However, university officials said they would not pay the ransom.