Cyber security researcher and writer Jeremy Kirk from ISMG Corp broke the news via Twitter this morning (Tuesday September 27).
“The Optus hacker has released 10,000 customer records and says a 10K batch will be released every day over the next four days if Optus doesn’t give into the extortion demand,” he wrote.
The hacker is demanding they be paid $1.5 million.
Kirk also included a screenshot from the alleged hacker, who noted that ransom demand was a ‘small price’ to pay compared to the revenue Australia’s second-largest provider makes.
They also said they would delete customers' data from their hard drive once Optus pays up.
The company has been given four days to decide.
On Thursday (September 22), Optus admitted they had lost the data of nearly 10 million of its former and current customers in a massive cyber attack.
The hack included accessing passport details, license numbers, emails, home addresses, dates of birth, and telephone numbers. Optus confirmed that around 2.8 million customers' private information had been compromised.
Optus CEO Kelly Bayer Rosmarin said of the scandal: “We are devastated to discover that we have been subject to a cyberattack that has resulted in the disclosure of our customers’ personal information to someone who shouldn’t see it."
Cybersecurity Minister Clare O’Neil called the cyber attack ‘unprecedented’.
“We are still going to be talking about the Optus hack in the weeks to come,” she said, as per news.com.au.
“Optus needs to communicate clearly to their customers about exactly what information’s been taken from specific individuals, and then needs to assist and support customers to manage the impacts of what is an unprecedented theft of consumer information in Australian history.”
During question time yesterday (Monday, September 26), the minister also called for stricter cyber security laws while saying the telecom company is responsible for the mass data theft, as per ABC News.
She added: "We expect Optus to continue to do everything they can to support their customers and former customers.
"One way they can do this is providing free credit monitoring to impacted customers.
"This will help protect those customers against identity theft and I call on Optus to make that commitment today."Featured Image Credit: Takatoshi Kurikawa / Alamy Stock Photo. Chris Rout / Alamy Stock Photo