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Ransomware victim Travelex goes into Administration


Ransomware victim Travelex has fallen into administration with an estimated 1,200 job losses.


PwC announced at the end of last week that it had been appointed joint administrators of the failed currency exchange business.


“The impact of a cyber-attack in December 2019 and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic this year has acutely impacted the business,” admitted PwC.


The Sodinokibi (REvil) variant is believed to have struck the firm on New Year’s Eve last year, forcing its website offline and impacting its bricks-and-mortar stores and banking services. It took until January 17 for the firm to get its first customer-facing systems live again in the UK.


Reports at the time suggested that a critical unpatched vulnerability in Pulse Secure VPNs (CVE-2019-11510) may have allowed attackers to remotely execute malicious code. A security researcher said he reached out to the firm in September 2019 to flag the issue but was ignored.


It’s still unclear exactly how much these mistakes ended up costing the firm although reports suggested that the REvil gang was demanding a $6m (£4.6m) ransom in return for the decryption key and deletion of stolen customer data.


Parent company Finablr revealed that a combination of the cyber-attack and the hit to business from COVID-19 was predicted to cost the firm £25m in Q1 2020, although it also claimed that cyber-insurance would cover a large part of its outgoings.

PwC remained upbeat about the future of the company, following its £84 million restructuring.


“The completion of this transaction has safeguarded 1802 jobs in the UK and a further 3635 globally, and ensured the continuation of a globally recognized brand,” said joint administrator, Toby Banfield.

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