British jewelry giant Graff Diamonds Corp. has recently filed a lawsuit against The Travelers Companies, Inc. Latter allegedly failed to provide indemnification for the former’s loss of $7.5 million to ransomware attackers.
As per a report by Bloomberg, in September last year, the security system of Graff had been exploited by the Russian ransomware group Conti. This compromised the data belonging to “high-end” customers, and the notorious gang accessed their information, including the former U.S. President Donald Trump and the royal families in UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar.
Conti didn’t stop there and published 69,000 documents containing personal information of jeweler’s clients and threatened to release more if Graff did not pay $15 million in Bitcoin. In November, the billion-dollar jewelry brand paid the gang 118 Bitcoin units worth around $7.5 million at the time, citing clients’ protection. Graff’s spokesperson stated:
“The criminals threatened targeted publication of our customers’ private purchases. We were determined to take all possible steps to protect their interests and so negotiated a payment which successfully neutralized that threat.”
The ransomware attack was an “insured risk”
Notably, the company said as the ransomware incident was an “insured risk,” it expected its insurer, Travelers, to cover the losses it incurred. However, the insurer has not offered any indemnity to date. The company stated:
“[Graff is] extremely frustrated and disappointed by Travelers’ behavior to avoid settlement of this insured risk. They have left [the company] with no option but to bring these recovery proceedings to the High Court.”
Meanwhile, Bitcoin ransomware attacks are becoming really common over the past few years in the United States. In February, the FBI talked about ransomware and cited crypto as the key payment method because of its decentralized nature.
Regulators around the world are working to reduce these attacks. Notably, the Australian government brought stricter laws against ransomware in October last year.