Play Ransomware Gang Attack A Spanish Bank

One of Spain’s largest banking institutions, Globalcaja,  has been hit by a ransomware attack affecting multiple branches. The attack is understood to have been carried out by the Play ransomware group, also known as PlayCrypt. The ransomware’s name is derived from its behaviour, as it adds the extension “.play” after encrypting files. Its ransom note also contains the single word, “PLAY,” along with the ransomware group’s contact email address. 

The ransomware gang is claiming Globalcaja is one of its latest victims and says it has gained access to both private and personal data, as well as numerous client and employee documents. Passport information and confidential contracts were also noted amongst the list of data seized during the incident. The bank has not confirmed that it has paid any ransom.

Globalcaja has nearly half a million customers and the bank provides a wide range of services. It manages a substantial portfolio of consumer loans, totalling over $4.6 billion, and employs approximately 1,000 people. The bank said that it "activated security” protocols designed to mitigate the impact of a potential breach. “From the very beginning, at Globalcaja we activated the security protocols created for this purpose, which led us to disable some office posts and temporarily limit the performance of some operations,” said the bank.  “We continue to work hard to finish normalising the situation and are analysing what happened, prioritising security at all times.”

This attack is the latest in a number of high-profile attacks conducted by the ransomware group, which has become more widely known following a series of high-profile attacks last year.

Play ransomware was used to attack the German hotel chain, H-Hotels and the State of New York Polytechnic college in 2022. This group also hit organisations across Latin America and has a track record of deploying attacks on companies operating in India, Hungary, the Netherlands, and Spain. 

Spanish financial institutions have been a hacking target for a long time, but the country has been dealing with more ransomware incidents in 2023, with one attack hitting a Barcelona hospital crippling a and another bringing down a Spanish fun park company.

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