Hackers breach Israeli insurance company, steal client data

BlackShadow group claims responsibility for ‘massive’ attack on Shirbit, which held information on many civil servants; National Cyber Bureau confirms breach and is investigating

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Illustrative. A hacker breaking into a computer. (gorodenkoff via iStockPhoto)
Illustrative. A hacker breaking into a computer. (gorodenkoff via iStockPhoto)

Hackers targeting an Israeli insurance company claimed to have made off with a vast hoard of personal data on its clients, many of whom are civil servants.

In a joint statement Tuesday, the Capital Markets Authority and the Israel National Cyber Directorate confirmed that there had been a cyberattack on the Shirbit insurance company and that information had been leaked in the breach.

The statement said that an investigation into a possible cyber incident had begun the night before amid suspicions of an attack on the company’s servers.

“An initial investigation found that information on the details of clients’ insurance is involved,” the statement said, noting that the investigation was still ongoing.

Although personal information was taken, it did not include credit card details, Israeli officials said Tuesday, according to Hebrew media reports.

A group calling itself BlackShadow took responsibility for the attack, boasting of its success in a series of ungrammatical and poorly spelled tweets that included images of some of the information taken, as well as technical details apparently intended to show the scale of the assault.

“A huge cyber attack has been taken place by Black Shadow team,” the group tweeted. “There has been a massive attack on the network infrastructure of Shirbit Company, which is in Israel economic sphere.”

“In this action, in addition to serious damage to data centers, information of a significant part of the company’s subscribers has been leaked,” the group continued, saying it had made “subscribers identity documents, financial statements and other company-related documents” available for download

“Also all of customer’s and employee’s identities has been hacked,” Blackshadow said. It did not give any motive for the hack.

One of the documents the group tweeted appeared to show the personal details, including the home address and phone numbers, of Tel Aviv District Court President Judge Gilad Neuthal.

Screen capture from video of Tel Aviv District Court President Judge Gilad Neuthal. (YouTube)

A senior executive at Shirbit, who was not named, told Channel 12 news, “We don’t know who was behind the attack,” the executive said. “We took down our website in order to prevent further cyber attacks.”

Shirbit specializes in real estate, auto, and travel insurance. A month ago it won a bid to provide auto insurance for the country’s civil service employees during 2021, the Walla website reported.

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