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Industry warning after top operator hacked

31 Jan 2022  By Paul Yandall | | @tourismticker

AJ Hackett Bungy New Zealand is warning the industry to beware after suffering a serious cyberattack that disrupted access to its IT systems.

AJ Hackett Bungy NZ is warning operators to be prepared for cyberattacks.

The attack is understood to have happened earlier this month after hackers gained access to the operator’s systems with the exact nature of the breach still under investigation.

Bungy NZ chief executive David Mitchell said in a statement provided to the Ticker following enquiries into the incident that while the cyberattack was “incredibly disruptive, briefly undermining access to Bungy’s technology systems, the company was prepared for this kind of event”.

“Our programmes and processes meant our IT team were able to move quickly to shut our system down and minimise the ongoing impact.”

Mitchell said access to email, files and other operating systems were temporarily lost but there was “currently no evidence that the hackers were successful in copying any company information”. 

“Our IT team will continue to investigate how the breach occurred and any changes that need to be made to ensure it does not happen again,” he said.

“We did not engage with the hackers and no ransom sum was proposed by them.”

Mitchell added it was a reminder for other businesses to be prepared for a cyberattack.

“I’d encourage others in the industry to get prepared in case they are targeted. Seek expert advice, review technology systems and ensure a proper plan is in place to minimise the impact.”

Even large businesses with significant cyber security systems can be caught out by sophisticated attacks.

Air New Zealand fell for a scam in 2019 when two contact centre staff email accounts were phished leading to a breach in Airpoints customer data.

Tourism New Zealand successfully repelled a “password spray” attack in 2019 but a breach in 2016 destroyed data on laptops and servers. 

Businesses that suffer a cyberattack should contact the government’s Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT NZ) to report the incident and seek advice.


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