Locked Out: Rackspace Customers Stranded Without Data

by Craig Laird Jamieson, CEO of Loop Backup written on 15th December 2022

Locked Out: Rackspace Customers Stranded Without DataFor over a week now, customers of Rackspace have been locked out of their email and data hosted on the service due to a ransomware attack. With no timeline for recovery of their data and no access to their emails, customers have been stranded in a difficult and frustrating situation for 12 days and counting. In this blog post, we’ll be discussing the impact of the ransomware attack on Rackspace customers, how they’re coping without access to their data, and what options they may have for recovering their data.

What is ransomware?

Ransomware is a type of malicious software that is designed to block access to a computer system until the victim pays a sum of money, or ransom, to the attacker. Once activated, the malware will either lock down a computer system by encrypting files and data or by blocking user access to the system entirely. It is typically spread through malicious websites, email attachments, or by exploiting security vulnerabilities in a system.

Ransomware can have a devastating effect on businesses and individuals alike, as any important data held in a system could be lost forever if the ransom isn’t paid. The attackers are typically very well-organised and sophisticated, making it difficult for victims to gain back access to their systems without paying the ransom. As such, it’s important to keep your systems updated and secure, as well as maintain regular backups of important data, in order to avoid falling victim to ransomware attacks.

How did this happen to Rackspace?

Rackspace, one of the largest cloud hosting providers in the world, was hit with a ransomware attack 12 days ago on their hosted Exchange email service. The attack locked customers out of their accounts and prevented them from accessing their data, causing major disruption.

Unfortunately, while Rackspace has made significant efforts to respond to the incident, they have not been able to give any indication of when the service will be restored. This has left many customers feeling helpless and frustrated, unsure of when they’ll be able to get back to work. 

The ransomware attack was particularly destructive because it was tailored for Microsoft Exchange servers, the technology that powers most hosted email services. As a result, it was able to bypass traditional security measures, leaving all users vulnerable.

As of now, it’s unclear exactly how the hackers managed to gain access to Rackspace’s systems. What is clear, however, is that this incident highlights the importance of robust cybersecurity protocols. Despite the best efforts of companies like Rackspace, cyber-attacks can happen to anyone at any time – and it’s essential that businesses take steps to protect themselves. 

While there are still many unanswered questions regarding this particular attack, it serves as an important reminder that no one is immune from cyber threats. As the digital landscape continues to evolve, it’s more important than ever for companies to invest in robust security measures and ensure their data is safe.

What does this mean for the customer?

Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts a user’s data and holds it for ransom, demanding payment in exchange for unlocking the data. It’s an increasingly common form of cyber attack, and unfortunately it can be very difficult to recover from.

That’s exactly what happened to Rackspace customers on day 12 of the ransomware Exchange email incident. It’s been more than two weeks since their data was locked away and they still haven’t been able to get access to it.

So what does this mean for the customer? Well, they’re left in a tricky situation. On the one hand, they have to pay the ransom in order to get their data back. But on the other hand, there’s no guarantee that the criminals will actually give them back the data even if they pay.

The best option for Rackspace customers is to try to find other ways to recover their data without paying the ransom. This could involve restoring from backups or using data recovery software, but these methods can be time-consuming and expensive.

The takeaway here is that ransomware is a serious problem and it’s important for businesses to take steps to protect their data from it. This includes having regular backups in place and training staff on how to spot and avoid malicious emails. Taking these measures can help protect your business from falling victim to ransomware like Rackspace customers did.

What are some steps that can be taken to prevent this from happening again?

With the recent news of Rackspace customers dealing with 12 days of ransomware-induced data loss, it’s important to understand the best ways to prevent this type of issue from occurring in the future. While some businesses may think that their data is safe due to measures such as firewalls and antivirus software, it’s essential to take additional steps in order to protect yourself from ransomware attacks. 

The first step you should take is to back up your data. This should be done regularly, ensuring that a recent version of your data is stored on a device not connected to the internet. This will allow you to recover quickly in the event of a ransomware attack.

The second step is to ensure that all systems are kept up to date with the latest security patches. Software companies often release updates to patch security holes, so it’s important to keep your systems up to date to minimise potential threats.

Finally, it’s important to educate your employees about cybersecurity best practices. Make sure they know not to open emails from unknown sources and not to click on suspicious links. Additionally, teach them how to identify phishing attempts, which can lead to a successful ransomware attack.

By following these steps, businesses can help protect themselves from ransomware attacks and prevent the kind of data loss experienced by Rackspace customers. Regularly backing up data, maintaining updated systems, and educating employees can go a long way in preventing these incidents.

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