The names, addresses, bank details and signatures of some Wightlink customers have been compromised following a sophisticated cyber attack on the cross-Solent operator’s IT infrastructure, it has been revealed.
Wightlink is in the process of contacting affected customers about the data security incident and has reported the matter to the Police, with the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit currently investigating the matter.
The company says that it was on 7th February this year that it discovered Wightlink had been the victim of a criminal cyber-attack via unauthorised activity on the company’s IT systems, which has resulted in some customer personal information being accessed.
Security experts are said to have been carrying out extensive investigations into the incident, with confirmation that compromised data may include customer’s first name, last name, bank account number and sort code, address and signature.
In a statement issued tonight, Wightlink has told Island Echo:
“Unfortunately, despite Wightlink taking appropriate security measures, some of its back office IT systems were affected by a cyber attack last month. However, this criminal action has not affected Wightlink’s ferries and FastCats, which have continued to operate normally during and following the attack, nor were its booking system and website affected.
“As soon as the incident was discovered, Wightlink engaged specialist cyber security experts to investigate and assess the situation and reported the matter to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Wightlink is also liaising with the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit.
“Wightlink does not process or store payment card details for bookings. However the investigation has identified a small number of customers and staff for whom other items of personal information may have been compromised during the incident.
Wightlink Chief Executive Keith Greenfield says:
“This was a highly sophisticated criminal attack on an essential service. I would like to thank all my colleagues at Wightlink who responded quickly ensuring that the impact to customers was minimised and that cross-Solent travel and bookings were unaffected.”
Wightlink says it will be making no further comment at this stage as the matter is an ongoing criminal investigation.
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