It has been reported that the International Committee of the Red Cross has recently suffered a cyber-attack, during which the data of more that 515,000 vulnerable people was accessed and seized. Some of the individuals affected recently fled conflicts.
The ICRC confirmed the attack in a published statement: “A sophisticated cybersecurity attack against computer servers hosting information held by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was detected this week. The attack compromised personal data and confidential information on more than 515,000 highly vulnerable people, including those separated from their families due to conflict, migration and disaster, missing persons and their families, and people in detention.”
So far it is unknown who may be behind the attack. The hackers originally targeted an external company in Switzerland, which is contracted to store the ICRC’s data. Currently there is no evidence that the sensitive data has been released to public domain. The most pressing concern, however, is the potential risk that comes with this breach. Particularly, any confidential information being shared on the internet, as the data in question belongs to individuals whom the Red Cross and Red Crescent network seeks to protect.