Ellen Conlin Hair & Beauty Glasgow - Fights Back Online
A Hair & Beauty Salon in Glasgow that was hit by cyber attackers, targeting valuable salon data, have been fighting back at online hackers. BBC and STV news reported the attack on BBC News Online, STV News and local news papers Daily Record, Evening Times,The Herald, and current affairs programme BBC Scotland 2015, covered the story where they were held to a ransom of 1000 euros for the return of their valuable data. The ransom was paid but 80% of the data was corrupted.
It has been a turbulent time for the business owners Ken Main and Ellen Conlin - Main keeping a successful salon running smoothly, rebuilding the damaged data, delivering the high standard of service that clients demand when returning to the salon for hair services or the latest beauty procedure, dealing with the police and taking steps to become safer online.
The Police Cyber Unit have been supportive and helpful after a slow start in responding. Statements have been given to them, and they are analysing the corrupted hard drive to ascertain where the attack came from. Ken Main said "it is really comforting to know that someone is chasing these criminals". The Police also believe that the "bug" or "virus" may have come into the system from a hacked supplier sending electronic invoices.
Salon Owner Ken Main has some advice for others who might could be effected and what to watch out for "look at email address that are coming through as enquiries and check the extension e.g .com or .co.uk and be vigilant for something that wouldn't be at all relevant for you eg .ru - a Russian address"!
"If you haven't got website analytics software - which tracks users activity, get some, as the geo - targeting can show where traffic to your site comes from around the world and if there is an alarming amount visiting trying to access admin areas as an example, this could be indicative of a potential attack"
What has the salon done since the cyber attack?
An upgraded website security package for http://www.ellenconlinhair.com, created automated reports of website traffic from out of the UK, changed passwords, backed up all computers data, create hard copies of systems, started to promote online safety with staff being more careful about what they do and don't do online and additional external, removable, daily backup.
Salon Owner Ken Main said "For our small business it's a challenge to stay up to date with the constantly evolving digital market - investing heavily, we really push to make the salon accessible on mobile, tablet and laptop having recently launched a rewards mobile app so customers can benefit from every visit."
"Other than the obvious of having secure passwords and email addresses, you aren't even aware of other vulnerabilities until hackers strike. We are now taking steps to become safer online as a business and thinking about the social media sites and the software subscriptions we are using too."
What's next for Ellen Conlin Hair... a dedicated hard back up procedure for the website, records and data then become more vigilant going forward and being aware of signs that are unfamiliar and unusual in our electronic environment.
Press Contact Ken Main
Owner Ellen Conlin Hair & Beauty