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Ransomware gang Lockbit has reportedly hacked Maximum Industries, a part manufacturer for SpaceX. The gang claims to have stolen 3,000 blueprints developed by SpaceX engineers and has threatened to sell or release them publicly by March 20 if a ransom isn’t paid.
The group posted the breach on its dark web site taunting SpaceX owner Elon Musk that they’ll help “sell your drawings to other manufacturers – build the ship faster and fly away”. While Maximum Industries might not be willing to pay up the undisclosed ransom amount, if the leak is true, Musk might have to cough up the ransom amount as a leak or sale of such information could draw unwanted attention from American authorities considering their increasing reliance on the company to launch things into space.
However, buying schematics is just half the story in such cases. The buyer would still need to manufacture the parts and use them without causing suspicion, which could set off expensive investigations. The gang claims that the 3,000 drawings have been certified by SpaceX engineers, however, there’s no confirmation on whether or not anyone outside the gang has actually reviewed the database to confirm its authenticity.
Additionally, Lockbit isn’t exactly the most honest ransomware gang when it comes to their claims. That said, they have been causing major problems. Recently, the group hacked financial technology firm ION, attacking its Cleared Derivatives division on January 31 and forcing US and European banks and brokers to process some derivative trades manually.
Lockbit was also behind the Royal Mail hack, which finally got back on track in February after resuming international shipments. While Lockbit claims ION did pay a ransom, there’s no such news for the Royal Mail, in whose case the attackers seemingly gave up on any ransom hopes and leaked files they claimed belonged to the organisation.