US convenience store chain 7-Eleven had to shut down in Denmark after a cyberattack disabled checkout and payment systems all over the country.
The group, which runs over 170 stores in Denmark, announced that it couldn’t use cash registers and accept payments, suspecting a cyberattack as the primary cause of the disruption.
“We suspect that we have been exposed to a hacker attack today, Monday 8 August 2022. This means that we cannot use checkouts or receive payment. Therefore, we are keeping the stores closed until we know the extent. We naturally hope that we can open the stores again soon,” the company wrote on its Facebook and Instagram pages.
7-Eleven operators in Denmark said they were able to restore operations in five of the affected stores. However, they are only accepting cash and MobilePay transfers.
“We expect to open more during the day. The remaining stores remain closed for now,” the company wrote on its Instagram account.
While it’s not clear what type of attack caused the disruption, convenience stores in Europe have been affected by ransomware attacks in the past.
Last year, the supermarket chain Spar was forced to shut more than 300 of its branch stores in the north of England following an attack on its IT systems.
Last July, the Swedish Coop grocery store chain was forced to close all 800 stores since a cyberattack against software provider Kaseya prevented the company from using its cash registers.
The number of ransomware attacks grew last quarter compared to the beginning of the year. Digital Shadows counted 705 victims, 21% more than over previous months. Ivan Righi, a Senior Cyber Threat Intelligence Analyst at Digital Shadows, thinks we’ll only see more attacks as the year progresses.
“[…] activity is likely to continue increasing until the end of the year. The rise in activity was primarily attributed to smaller ransomware groups having a higher activity level than usual, which is another trend likely to continue due to the recent closure of some large ransomware groups,” Righi said.
Threat actors primarily focused on the industrial goods and services sector, followed by the technology as well as construction and materials sectors. Companies in the United States continue to be the primary focus of ransomware gangs, with around 39% of total victims in the US.
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