The article was originally published on 16 October 2017 on Aktuálně.cz, EURACTIV.cz’s media partner.
It looked like an ordinary e-mail from a client wanting to return goods that it had purchased.
Nobody in the Czech company Catus, which is involved in the food industry, thought it could be a virus.
“But then we opened the invoice in the attachment and found that it was nothing to do with any client,” Milan Vlček, head of the company, describes his experience with the cyber-attack.
The system that had been running until then shut down and a demand for a ransom payment appeared on the screen. Until the company sent the amount requested to the given account, the virus would block the computer and eventually delete all the company’s data.