The German pharmaceutical company Bayer claims to have contained a cyberattack possibly carried out by Chinese hackers. According to the ethical hacking training specialists from the International Institute of Cyber Security (IICS), the company reported that it faced a possible data breach and interruptions in its regular operations.
A spokesman for Bayer states that the company detected the presence of malicious software in their systems since the beginning of 2018, so it began to analyze it stealthily, continuing for almost a year to finally eliminate it this week.
The company spokesman claims that there is no evidence to demonstrate a data breach, it was also mentioned that the total damage caused by this incident is still being calculated. The company also reported that the German authorities are already investigating the incident.
Ethical hacking training specialists mention that, after the pharmaceutical research, the attack has been linked to the Chinese hacker group known as ‘ Wicked Panda ‘. Researchers revealed that hackers used a malware variant called WINNTI, with which they managed to access a system remotely to deploy new attacks from that point.
“Once the malware is installed, you can perform almost any hacking activity”, said Bayer spokesman, adding that “the discovery of this malware provides clear evidence about the origin of this campaign”. Bayer clarified that it was not possible to determine when the malware entered its systems.
According to the ethical hacking training specialists, Germany has experienced a large increase in the number of cyber-security incidents that disrupt the regular work of some of the major sectors, such as electrical networks.
Although It is not possible to determine with certainty who are responsible for the attack against Bayer (the use of this malware is not exclusive of groups of Chinese hackers) the IT managers of the company consider that these techniques of attack, as well as the tools used, are closely related to the hacker groups backed by the Chinese government.