Hundreds of Tim Hortons outlets across Canada closed after malware attack

Tim Hortons restaurants across Canada have been hit by a computer malware that forced some locations to shut down over the past week.

When dealing with cyber threats for the retail sector, Target in most prominent case of potential damages from a cyber attack.

Today I want to report you the case of a malware-based attack that hit payment systems of hundreds of Tim Hortons restaurants across Canada forcing many of them to close.

“The company told the Globe and Mail that the virus hit fewer than 100 locations, attacking the Panasonic cash registers that the chain uses.” reported the Huffington Post Canada.

“But a source close to the issue told HuffPost Canada that as many as 1,000 Tim Hortons locations may have been impacted, amounting to roughly a quarter of all Canadian locations. Some locations were forced to close, while others had to shut down their drive-throughs.” 

At the time of writing, there are no details about the type of malware that infected the systems at Tim Hortons restaurants, CTVNews quoting sources close to the incident reported that the malicious code was specifically designed to target cash registers making them unusable.

“The cash registers just plain don’t work,” the source told the news station “Many or the stores had to close totally.”

The Great White North Franchisee Association (GWNFA) which represents Tim Hortons franchisees is expected to take legal action against the Restaurant Brands International (RBI), the operator of Tim Hortons.

GWNFA accuses them of loss of revenue and of course reputational damage.

Tim Hortons locations malware

In a letter obtained by the Globe and the Canadian Press, Tim Hortons franchisees belonging to the Great White North Franchisee Association asked head office for compensation for losses due to the virus.

“The business interruption includes inability to use some or all of the … issued cash registers and [point-of-sale] terminals, causing partial and complete store closures, franchisees paying employees not to work, lost sales and product spoilage,” the letter from law firm Himelfarb Proszanski reportedly stated.

The letter defined the incident “a failure” and noted that it comes “on the heels of the public relations debacle” from January when two Cobourg, Ont. franchises owned by Ron Joyce Jr. and Jeri Horton-Joyce, the children of the company’s billionaire co-founders, moved to offset the province’s minimum wage hike by cutting paid breaks and forcing workers to cover a bigger share of their benefits.

According to the CTVNews, RBI has declared that no financial (i.e. data credit card information) and sensitive data was stolen by hackers.

Pierluigi Paganini

(Security Affairs – Tim Hortons, security breach)

The post Hundreds of Tim Hortons outlets across Canada closed after malware attack appeared first on Security Affairs.

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