Hackers demand ransom after malware attack

Cyber criminals are seeking a ransom to unlock an international company's computers

Cyber criminals have demanded a ransom after locking the computer system of international company Manheim Auctions.

Western Australia's Consumer Protection said the ransom was $30 million but Manheim has refused to confirm the amount.

Manheim said no personal data was compromised in a recent malware attack including information related to business partners and suppliers.

"The malware attack was designed to compromise access to our internal systems," a spokesman said in a statement on Tuesday.

"We want to apologise to our customers for any inconvenience caused as a result of this incident."

Manheim has resumed its normal auction schedule, the spokesman said.

WA ScamNet has received 68 reports of ransomware or malware attacks since January last year.

Consumer Protection commissioner Penny Lipscombe said all businesses should review and update their cybersecurity with the latest antivirus software and firewalls.

"Often the ransomware is downloaded by an employee who opens an attachment in a scam email or clicks on a link, giving the cyber criminals access to the computer system," she said.

"The system is locked by the criminals and files encrypted, followed by a ransom demand to have the system unlocked. Of course, we recommend that companies do not pay the ransom."