Isentia enters into trading halt following cyber security incident

Isentia Group has entered a trading halt to its securities with immediate effect pending a further announcement in relation to the cyber security incident announced on 27 October. According to an Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) filing, the company said the trading halt is expected to be lifted no later than the opening of trading on 3 November, concurrent with the release of a further announcement. Isentia added that it is not aware of any reason why the trading halt should not be granted.

On 27 October, Isentia announced that it was investigating a cyber security incident which was disrupting services within its SaaS platform Mediaportal. It said in an ASX filing previously that it was working closely with leading cyber security specialists to asses the extent of the incident and the impact on its systems. It also notified the Australian Cyber Security Centre.

CEO Ed Harrison (pictured) said Isentia is taking urgent steps to contain the incident and conduct a full investigation into what happened and how to avoid a repeat occurrence in the future. "Our priority is to restore full service as soon as possible but until that occurs, we have put processes in place to support our customers," he added.

Meanwhile according to Guardian Australia, Isentia was a victim of a ransomware attack. This means that Isentia's systems are encrypted and the attacker will only release it once the money is paid. Customers have been unable to access their media data as a result of the ransomware attack, but Guardian Australia reported that staff too have been shut out of the portal.

Separately, Lazada and restaurant reservation platform Eatigo were also victims of a cyber attack recently, both succumbing to data breaches last week. Personal data from 1.1 million RedMart accounts were stolen and sold, while personal information from about 2.8 million eatigo accounts were illegally accessed during the breach, Channel NewsAsia reported. Courts was also recently fined SG$9,000 for exposing some of its members’ data and allowing unauthorised access into members' Homeclub accounts. The incident saw 76,844 of its members affected.

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