Popular sports betting site, Bet9ja, has become the latest victim of cyber-attack, which has hindered its users from accessing the website, and hampered all operations.
The betting site confirmed this in a statement posted on its official Twitter account that the website was attacked by Russian hacking group – BlackCat.
“The entire Bet9ja system has been under attack by the Russian Blackcat group who are famous for several attacks to huge companies in the world. It is a huge hacker attack by this Russian group but our people are working from yesterday without stopping for a minute to restore all the services but it is not easy,” Bet9ja said in a statement.
According to the statement, which was published earlier, the betting site claimed that the website was hit badly by the hack. It also added that the hacking group has asked for a ransom, but the company stated that it would not succumb to blackmail.
“They are asking for ransom already but we will never accept their conditions. it is important to let you know this so that we are all on the same page. They have hit us hard but of course they cannot kill us. We will stand our ground and come back even much more stronger,” Bet9ja added.
The online gambling site said its IT team is working with independent forensics, and cybercrime experts to resolve the issue, and restore the site to normal operation.
Bet9ja was founded in 2013 by the duo of Ayo Ojuroye and Kunle Soname. In April, 2020, the site was ranked as the third most visited site in Nigeria, ranking only behind Google, and YouTube – according to global internet traffic ranking firm, Alexa.
BlackCat is a Russian cybercrime group, and a faction on the Ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) scene. It target firms by exploiting vulnerabilities in their system through the BlackCat ransomware.
The BlackCat ransomware is also known as “ALPHV” and it is used to attack companies by gaining access to, and encrypting files, before asking for ransom which is usually in Bitcoin.
The group is allegedly responsible for ransomware attacks that took down a swath of Germany’s fuel-distribution system hindering payments at some filling stations.
Security experts believe that the group operates five onion domains, three of which function as its negotiation site, while the rest categorized as an “ALPHV” public leak site, and a private leak site.