Files were stolen from a manufacturing company that makes Apple products by a gang of hackers that are now openly trying to extort the company in exchange for not leaking the stolen files.
According to Bloomberg News, hackers are asking Apple for $50 million dollars in exchange for the stolen blueprints of Apple’s latest products.
The Apple manufacturing company that was hacked is named Quanta which makes a number of Apple products including the Mac Pro, which apple recently moved its manufacturing to China.
The hackers are allegedly part of well-known cybercrime organization that has engaged in high-profile cyberattacks around the world, NBC News reports.
This specific group of hackers often asks for ransom in the form of bitcoin after encrypting and threatening to publish their victims’ files online.
Law enforcement officials indicated that these hackers usually operate in countries that don’t extradite the US, like Russia, making it impossible for them to be physically stopped, according to NBC. The damage done to the Quanta files remains unclear.
A company spokesperson said in a statement that its "information security defense mechanism was activated in no time" and that there was only "a small range of services impacted by the attacks."
According to an official with Emsisoft who tracks ransomware gangs, Apple was given a set of options. "I think it entirely depends on the sensitivity of the data that was exfiltrated. If the release of the information could have a significant impact on one of Quanta's customers' bottom line, then somebody may be willing to pay to prevent it being released. If not, [the hackers] will likely strike out," he said.
"Apple's option are pretty simple," Callow said. "Refuse to pay and strategize how to deal with the information becoming public or pay for a pinky-promise that [the hackers] will destroy the data. But why would they destroy it, especially if it has significant market value?"