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European Central Bank blackmailed after data breach

Cyber espionage; Network intrusion; Stolen credentials

Hackers penetrated an ECB website database containing personal information on individuals who had registered for events at the institution.

The Frankfurt-based ECB said in a statement on Thursday, “No internal systems or market-sensitive data were compromised.”

The institution received an e-mail on July 21 demanding an unspecified amount of money for the data.

The information taken contained all or part of a file of around 20,000 email addresses, names and contact details of people who had previously signed up for ECB conferences, press briefings or other events.

“The security violation comes less than four months before the ECB takes over a new role as the top banking supervisor for the euro area, a task that will involve managing more sensitive data than ever before,” Bloomberg reports. “The breach is the first time hackers have succeeded in accessing non-public data at the central bank.”


Financial Services; Government (Foreign)


July 24, 2014

reported by


number affected

20,000 individuals

location of breach




location of perpetrators


date breach occurred


date breach detected

July 21, 2014