Ransomware Attack Affects 300 UK Yum! Brand Restaurants

Ransomware Attack Affects 300 UK Yum! Brand Restaurants

The fast food company Yum! Brands has announced a major cybersecurity breach in the U.K.

In a Wednesday (Jan. 18) statement, the firm, which operates KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, said that a ransomware attack had affected some of its systems in the country, causing restaurant closures.

The release said that “less than 300 restaurants in the United Kingdom were closed for one day, but all stores are now operational.”

It added that the company is engaged in fully restoring affected systems, which is expected to be done “in the coming days.”

Although Yum! Brands said that data was taken from its network, but there is no evidence that customer databases were stolen.

News of the latest breach comes a day after the Norwegian company DNV announced that a ransomware attack had compromised its ShipManager platform.

According to DNV, about 70 customers operating around 1,000 vessels were affected by the cyber attack, forcing the company to take offline the servers that operate its maritime fleet management software.

As PYMNTS has reported, hackers deploying ransomware attacks target a range of victims, including various businesses and even healthcare organizations.

In the U.K., ransomware attacks reported to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) doubled to 654 in 2021 from 326 in 2020.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, financial institutions are an especially popular target. The number of ransomware attacks reported by financial institutions in the U.S. increased from 602 in 2020, to 1251 in 2021.

While such attacks are usually financially motivated, similar types of malware have been deployed for more sinister means, including espionage and politically motivated cyber warfare.

For example, since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, various public and private entities in the country have been subject to attacks that security analysts suspect are sponsored by the Russian state. 

Such hacks include the “HermeticWiper” and “FoxLoad” malware strains reported by Microsoft.

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