Cyberattack takes a USD 6 million toll on AKVA, company declines to confirm if it paid ransom

Published on
May 19, 2021

Kleppe, Norway-based AKVA Group ASA has declined to comment on whether losses it reported in its Q1 financial statement relating to a cyberattack resulted from paying a ransom. 

Cyber-attackers took a toll on the aquaculture technology and services provider in the first quarter of 2021, costing the company NOK 49.7 million (EUR 5 million, USD 6 million) in losses in January.   

On 11 January, the firm notified the Oslo Stock Exchange of the attack, which took place on Sunday, 10 January and resulted in several key systems being down in the aftermath. At the time, AKVA said it was working with Norwegian authorities and partners to map out an overview of the situation, ultimately making sure the damage and reach of the attack was contained.

Sharing its Q1 2021 results, AKVA said it does not expect to realize any further losses related to the cyberattack outside of Q1.

While AKVA has not said whether it has paid a ransom, Dagens Næringsliv commentator Thor Christian Jensen reported it had likely offered a bitcoin payment to the attackers to unlock its systems. AKVA CEO Knut Nesse told Dagens Næringsliv that the company would not comment on the matter of a ransom payment.

“For the record, we have not commented on any payment of a ransom, nor will we. We have reported direct costs of NOK 40.7 million [USD 4.9 million, EUR 4 million] related to our computer attack. We have had a team of external data specialists (15-20 people) who have worked for us since 10/1/201 in the case of data recovery. We expect this work to be completed in June. We have posted all costs with this for Q1,” Nesse said.

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