LockBit extends ransom deadline as Continental refuses to crack

In a sign of desperation following Continental’s stubborn refusal to pay up, cybercrime outfit LockBit has extended the deadline for its $50 million ransom demand to November 10, threatening to sell 40TB of data it allegedly stole for the same amount.

The original deadline of November 4 went unheeded by the German multinational automotive parts manufacturing company, whose chairman Wolfgang Reitzle and other key decision-makers decided not to cave in to the notorious ransomware gang’s demands after a breach in August.

Continental originally claimed the cyberattack had been averted, saying it retained full control of its IT systems, but rumors began to swirl on social media last week that LockBit had, in fact, succeeded in exfiltrating a substantial data haul and was now threatening to publish it if its ransom demands were not met.

However, these threats to leak data have been met with stern resistance from the automotive giant’s bosses, leading LockBit to issue a bizarre post on its website on November 9 denouncing Reitzle for his greed.

Lockbit's renewed threat issued to Continental on its website
In a bulletin reminiscent of a regular advert, LockBit offers to flog stolen data for $50m

“Wolfgang Reitzle was a very greedy man, so we are ready to sell 40 terabyes of the company’s private information in one hand for just $50 million, with a list of stolen files you can read,” it declared.

The notice comes complete with a timer counting down to the new deadline, which at the time of writing is just over five hours away.

Russia-linked LockBit is widely regarded as the most prolific and therefore dangerous ransomware gang in the world, but it may well have met its match in Continental. Are Reitzle & co quaking in their boots or smiling triumphantly? The standoff continues.

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