According to a report from the team at Variety, which was the first to report on the post on the dark web, a criminal group hacked the major entertainment law firm Grubman Shire Meiselas & Sacks and claims to have obtained documents on President Donald Trump. The group has used ransomware attacks to lock networks and is demanding $42 million to return access to systems and documents.
“The next person we’ll be publishing is Donald Trump. There’s an election race going on, and we found a ton of dirty laundry,” the group’s post reportedly said. “And to you voters, we can let you know that after such a publication, you certainly don’t want to see him as president.”
The group, which also claims to have obtained documents on celebrities such as Lady Gaga, Madonna, and Christina Aguilera, has provided a one-week deadline. It also claimed to have already received $365,000 in response to the attack.
“We have been informed by the experts and the FBI that negotiating with or paying ransom to terrorists is a violation of federal criminal law,” Grubman Shire Meiselas & Sacks said in a statement. “Even when enormous ransoms have been paid, the criminals often leak the documents anyway.”
“Our elections, our government and our personal information are under escalating attacks by foreign cybercriminals. Law firms are not immune from this malicious activity. Despite our substantial investment in state-of-the-art technology security, foreign cyberterrorists have hacked into our network and are demanding $42 million as ransom. We are working directly with federal law enforcement and continue to work around the clock with the world’s leading experts to address this situation,” the firm noted.
Neither the White House nor the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has responded to requests for comment.
Alan is a writer, editor, and news junkie based in New York.