Hackers attack HK-Macau bridge project

In yet another failure at the HK$90 billion HK-Macau bridge project, it’s been revealed hackers attacked a server used by one of the contractors and locked up key files with ransomware.

Some of the files were destroyed in the attack, which took place at the site office of consultant engineers Arup Group in early March. The Arup team was working on the final bridge link to Scenic Hill on the south-east end of Chek Lap Kok island.

Staff discovered many files on the server could not be opened and received a ransom demand from hackers in order to open the files. The server had a large number of project-related material, including progress reports and blueprints that if stolen or destroyed could harm the progress of the project, Oriental Daily reported today.

The company feared that personal information belonging to a thousand employees who had worked on the project over the past five years, including their IDs and bank account details, had been compromised in the attack.

But the Highways Dept, which acknowledged the incident took place on March 2, said staff personal information had not been stored on the server.

After calling in police, the company was able to unlock a number of the ransomed files.  A Highways Dept spokesperson confirmed that a number of files had been destroyed, but said no data had been leaked in the attack.

The department was unable to say how much the attack had cost the project. It said the hack did not hinder progress of the bridge construction, which was still on course to open by the end of the year.

The computer breach is the latest in a series of incidents that have plagued the seven-year-old project, that include delays, cost overruns, the deaths of nine workers and hundreds of injuries.

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