The notorious BlackCat (ALPHV) ransomware gang has struck again, targeting America’s belovedn fast-food chain, Five Guys. The gang has listed Five Guys on its data leak site, claiming to have stolen confidential information from the company.
The data exposes sensitive information such as financial statements, payroll details, recruitment information, and audit records, raising questions regarding the safety of the company’s customers
Though BlackCat ransomware group have listed Five Guys, a time frame to pay the ransom demand is yet to be released. However, the screenshot shared by the cybercriminals confirms that the purloined data dates back to 2021.
Five Guys is yet to respond to the request from The Cyber Express for comments.
Five Guys data breach: The fast food chain responds to the data breach
Five Guys has acknowledged the data breach, announcing that a highly skilled threat actor may have gained access to confidential information. The security breach occurred on September 17, 2022, and a thorough investigation has determined that the perpetrator accessed details submitted during the employment procedure.
In the wake of a data breach, Five Guys acted promptly by executing its pre-prepared incident response plan to minimize the damage. The firm conducted an in-depth examination with the support of a specialized cybersecurity organization and notified the relevant authorities. The company is fully participating in the ongoing law enforcement probe.
The data breach has reportedly compromised files containing information submitted during the employment process, such as applicants’ names and other confidential details which were not disclosed in the official notification statement.
To support those affected by the data breach, Five Guys offers credit monitoring and identity protection services free of charge through IDX, a consumer privacy company. These identity protection services come with a comprehensive package, including one year of credit and CyberScan monitoring, a $1 million insurance reimbursement policy, and managed identity theft recovery services.
Five Guys data breach: Who is the BlackCat/ALPHV ransomware gang?
BlackCat, also known as Noberus or ALPHV, is part of a highly sophiticated Ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) operation in the cybercriminal world. The operation was first observed in November 2021 and is believed to be a continuation of previous ransomware operators such as REvil, Darkside, and BlackMatter, as well as having connections to FIN7 and FIN12.
BlackCat is known for its technical sophistication, including its ability to target a variety of corporate environments. It was one of the first major ransomware variants to be written in the Rust programming language and is highly customizable with constantly upgraded internal capabilities.
Some of its advanced technical features include a command-line interface, human operation, adaptable malware, multiple encryption routines, self-propagation, and the ability to evade hypervisors, making it one of the more versatile ransomware operations.
BlackCat recruits affiliates to carry out corporate breaches and encrypt devices while they handle code maintenance and development. The executable includes a JSON configuration that allows customization, such as ransom note details, targeted services, and whitelisted files and folders.
Five Guys data breach: The company may face legal action
Turke & Strauss, a law firm specializing in data breach lawsuits, is reaching out to anyone who received a breach notification letter from Five Guys regarding potential legal action. The firm has obtained information indicating that the breach compromised sensitive information, including Social Security Numbers and driver’s license numbers and names.
The law firm is inviting individuals the breach has impacted to get in touch and discuss the possibility of taking legal action against the fast food chain. The notification letters made public only mention that names and unspecified information have been exposed; however, the firm claims that more sensitive information has been compromised.
Details surrounding the incident remain scarce. Five Guys reported “unauthorized access to files on a file server” on September 17, 2022. An investigation on December 8 revealed that the exposed files contained information submitted during the employment process. It is not yet known if the incident resulted from a ransomware attack or if someone stumbled upon an unprotected cloud storage instance.
Five Guys offers free credit monitoring and identity protection services to support those affected by the breach. The exact number of individuals impacted is not known. Still, authorities in Massachusetts have been informed about 93 residents being affected, and Montana has reported 12 individuals who were impacted. With over 1,700 locations worldwide and more than 5,000 employees, Five Guys is a well-established fast-food chain.