Hellmann Worldwide Logistics recently suffered a cyberattack

Hellmann Worldwide Logistics experienced a cyberattack on the 9th of December 2021. The German company is considered to be a top international source for its air freight, sea freight, road and rail, as well as its contract logistics products. No cause has been determined to the cyberattack that temporarily crippled the organization’s day-to-day operations.

Hellmann stated on their website about what they know (or at least what they are willing to publicly say) about the attack:

“The connections to the central data centre, which were cut as a precautionary measure on Wednesday, are currently still down to minimize IT risks. Our operations are therefore still impacted, but we have set up robust manual processes in many cases to keep the backlog as low as possible. At this point in time, there is no positive confirmation that data has been leaked or breached, but we cannot rule it out at present. Whilst communication via email and telephone is considered safe (inbound and outbound), we currently recommend to reach out to your contacts at Hellmann on their cell phones.”

Four days later, Hellmann reported that their operations were largely back to functioning normally:

“Our Global Crisis Taskforce together with external security specialists has made further progress in dealing with the situation. Business operations are largely running again and we are confident that we can eliminate remaining restrictions soon to be operating at full capacity again.”

It is mere speculation as to what brought Hellmann Worldwide Logistics’ network down. A likely culprit is ransomware, but there are plenty other of cyberattacks that can be carried out on business networks. What was interesting is how widespread the attack appeared to be, as all branches of the company seem to have been affected.

With stress on supply chains currently quite high, this attack came at a particularly bad time. However, the poor timing is probably what the attackers wanted to exploit.

Featured image: Flickr/Christiaan Colen

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