Okta Reviewing Potential Digital Breach

  • By Patrick Ryan
  • Mar 23, 2022

Okta representatives have admitted they are investigating a possible cyber-attack. The software specialist made the admission early Tuesday morning.   

What has Okta Revealed About the Breach?

As of the time of this publication, an Okta spokesperson has revealed the company is aware of reports of a potential digital infiltration. The spokesperson, Chris Hollins, also noted that the company’s digital forensics specialists are investigating the extent of the attack. Hollins made the comments in the form of a written statement provided to CNN. The statement also touched on how Hollins will provide updates as additional information becomes available.

Why Does the Okta Breach Matter?

The Okta hack is important as Okta is a software specialist that makes software solutions that empower companies to authenticate employee and client identities. All in all, Okta has more than 15,000 clients. Okta’s breach sent its stock sliding nearly 10% in premarket trading.

Who is Responsible for the Digital Breach?

Reuters insists the hacking collective referred to as Lapsus$ is responsible for the data breach. Lapsus$ even went as far as posting screen captures of the attack, allegedly revealing they obtained access to the target’s in-house administrative accounts as well as its Slack channel.  

Lapsus$ is a clandestine hacking collective that initially began making waves this past winter. The hacking collective took to the Telegram messaging app to state it did not take any of Okta’s databases directly from the company. Rather, the Lapsus$ crew highlighted the fact that its focus was on Okta customers.

What is Okta’s Response to the Digital Breach?

The Chief Executive Officer of Okta, Todd McKinnon, responded to the hack in the form of a Tweet published on Tuesday. McKinnon noted that his company believes the screen captures referenced above are tied to a digital security breach this past January that the company successfully mitigated. McKinnon noted that the company identified an attempt to break into the online account of one of its clients toward the end of January.  

Why is Lapsus$ Such a Problem?

The Lapsus$ hackers are targeting a wide variety of businesses. The hackers insist they have stolen valuable information from some of the world’s top companies dating back to the final month of 2021. The hacking collective started out by zeroing in on companies in Latin America. Digital security specialists believe the hackers are also located in Latin America. 

The hackers have gone to great lengths on their Telegram channel to stress the fact that they are not sponsored by any state and that their sole aim is to make money. However, not much else is known about Lapsus$.  

Digital forensics professionals do not have any evidence that the hackers extorted targets with the use of ransomware. However, the cyber security specialist Digital Shadows conducted a thorough review of Lapsus$ hacks and reported the group has attempted to bring rogue workers into the fold by targeting disgruntled individuals at target businesses. The hackers’ logic in using such an approach is that dangling financial compensation to angry employees just might be enough to convince them to provide passwords and other sensitive information that help execute hacks.

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