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World’s Leading Copper Producer Aurubis Suffers Crippling Cyberattack

A cyberattack caused Europe’s largest copper producer and the world’s second-largest copper recycler, Aurubis, to shut down its IT systems. The company that claims to produce more than one million tons of copper cathodes annually revealed the incident occurred last weekend.

Incident Details

According to a statement from the Germany-based Aurubis, the attack was detected on October 28 night in which hackers targeted its IT systems, but the company suspects it was a part of a more extensive operation launched against the mining and metal sector. Resultantly, various systems at Aurubis sites were forced to go offline to prevent further damage.

Impact of the Attack?

The Hamburg-headquartered firm didn’t reveal the extent of the impact on its operations. It is worth noting that copper is a highly significant metal as it is widely used in producing different things, especially in electric vehicles, renewable energy production, and energy storage technology.

“The primary goal is to keep production and the procurement of raw materials as well as the delivery of metals and products running. However, Aurubis is not yet able to provide any information on when the systems will be fully functional again,” Aurubis’s statement released on Friday evening read.

The company did note that production and environmental protection facilities installed at its smelter sites are running normally while incoming/outgoing goods were monitored manually. Aurubis is implementing transitional solutions to ensure the availability of an uninterrupted and full range of services to business partners by next week.

“Customers and suppliers can still reach their Aurubis contacts by phone,” the company stated.

Although there is no clarity on whether the attack was large-scale, the preventive measures taken by Aurubis indicate a ransomware attack. Aurubis’s description also mentioned the possibility of ransomware’s involvement in the cyberattack. However, the leaked websites of major ransomware groups didn’t post any data related to Aurubis.

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