Hackers disable Toyota email servers

The company’s Australian email server is out of service until further notice

A cyberattack against Toyota car manufacturer, on its Australia base, left its employees without access to their email accounts for days, reported network security specialists from the International Institute of Cyber Security.

The servers of Toyota Australia were the victim of a cyberattack in recent days, which led to an investigation involving the intervention of the Australian federal authorities. The causes of the attack are still unknown, but it is also ignored if this has generated more consequences.

The company confirmed the incident at the time, stating that it is already in collaboration with some international network security firms, so their systems will be restored as soon as possible.

Through a statement, Toyota Australia clarified some concerns about the incident: “So far, we do not have evidence to prove that the data of any employee or client has been compromised. We do not have additional technical details about the incident and its authorship”.

Affected employees have been unable to access their business email addresses, and staff have received instructions from Toyota’s network security team to establish communications through other media, such as phone and text messaging until the company’s email service is restored.

This incident adds to a growing list of cyber crimes in Australian territory. In recent days, it was announced that the Australian Parliament, in addition to some political parties, were victims of hacking. The first investigations suggest the performance of groups of hackers sponsored by foreign governments, according to a statement of the Australian authorities.

With regard to the latest incident, Toyota Australia claims that this is the first time it has had an attack of this nature. Employees in the company’s agencies claim that they are still able to access the sales system, although they still cannot access the company’s email server.

On the other hand, the customer service section of the company has placed a message mentioning that the page is “Under Maintenance”. “We regret the inconvenience that this may cause to our customers and we appreciate your patience”, adds the message on the Toyota Australia website.

Cybersecurity specialists agree that there are multiple probable causes of the attack. Investigator Matt Warren comments: “The perpetrators of the attack could have financial motivations, trying to steal financial details from Toyota’s customers, or it could be a corporate espionage campaign. It could even be retaliation for the closure of the Toyota plant in Altona, which turned the total Toyota Australia staff from over 4000 Australians to only 1700”.   

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