As we near the end of the month, it is time for a look back at key stories from the world of cyber security. We begin with the US CISA’s warning over Royal Ransomware’s capabilities. We then cover the UK NCSC’s new cyber security tools for small businesses. Finally, ‘Cyber security news Mar 2023’ ends with a new update on the recent Latitude Financial cyber-attack.

Read our news round-up from February 2023.

US cyber security agency raises alarm over custom ransomware programme

This piece from The Hacker News is on a new CISA advisory about Royal Ransomware. The threat actor emerged in the threat landscape last year, targeted U.S. and international organisations since September 2022. Royal actors gain access to a network before then disabling antivirus software and exfiltrating data. Ransomware is deployed and the systems encrypted, with earlier iterations dubbed ‘Zeon’. It now seems as though Royal has evolved to use a unique partial encryption approach. This approach allows for specific percentages of data in a file to be encrypted. Royal actors deploy methods including call back phishing to gain initial access.

Avoid phishing scams by:

  • Exercise caution when receiving communications containing links or requesting information
  • Learn how to spot phishing emails; look for tell-tale signs such as poor spelling or grammar
  • Use 2 Factor Authentication (2FA) / Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) on email accounts
  • Ensure that strong administrator privileges are in place, with user rights limited
  • Report any attacks and share the information with all staff

NCSC launches new services to help small organisations stay safe online


This piece from the National Cyber Security Centre reveals two new cyber security services for small businesses in the UK. As part of the latest phase of its ‘Cyber Aware’ campaign, the NCSC has released its Cyber Action Plan and Check Your Cyber Security tools. The former, once completed online, provides tailored advice on how businesses can improve their cyber security. The latter can be used by non-technical people to identify and fix existing security issues with systems and web browsers. Access the NCSC Cyber Action Plan and Check Your Cyber Security tools.

Latitude Financial cyber-attack worse than originally thought

In this article, The Guardian reveals that 14m customer records have been stolen from Latitude Financial. The consumer lender offers personal loans and credit to customers shopping at stores including The Good Guys and Harvey Norman. Some of the documents taken date back to 2005, and the customer records obtained include driver’s licence numbers, passport numbers and financial statements.

Worried about data breaches? Then consider how you currently store data; do you need to hold old customer records?

That is all for ‘Cyber security news Mar 2023’; were you affected by the Latitude Financial cyber-attack? Are you a small UK business benefitting from the new NCSC tools? Or perhaps, like so many others, you too are worried about ransomware? We would love to hear from you and our cyber security experts are here to assuage any fears you might have. Contact CRIBB and we’ll be happy to help!