Claim that hackers issued ransom demand

TalkTalk customers hit by ‘sustained’ cyberattack

TalkTalkPolice are investigating a cyber attack on telecoms company supplier TalkTalk which admitted that customer data, including credit card and bank details, may have been stolen.

The chief executive Dido Harding said she had received a message purporting to be from the hackers and demanding a ransom. It was difficult to know if it was genuine, she said, but this has escalated concern among the police and  security specialists in technology about the activities of cyber criminals.

The company is attempting to establish the extent of the damage caused by a “significant and sustained attack”.

In a statement, it said: “A criminal investigation was launched by the Metropolitan Police Cyber Crime Unit following a significant and sustained cyber attack on our website yesterday (Wednesday).

“That investigation is ongoing, but unfortunately there is a chance that some of the following data has been compromised: names, addresses, date of birth, phone numbers, email addresses, TalkTalk account information, credit card details and/or bank details.”

TalkTalk said it was “too early to say” how many of its four million UK customers had been affected, but the company urged users to change their passwords and check their bank accounts.

A TalkTalk spokeswoman said the company shut down its website after it became aware of the attack on Wednesday morning.

This is the latest cyber attack affecting TalkTalk customers.

In August personal data was breached after its mobile sales site was hit by a “sophisticated and co-ordinated cyber attack”.

TalkTalk customers were warned in February that scammers who managed to steal thousands of account numbers and names from the company’s computers.

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