Pacific City Bank confirms it was hit by ransomware

Visual representation of ransomware by showing encrypted files on a display
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Pacific City Bank (PCB), one of the largest Korean American banks in the US, has confirmed that it was the victim of a ransomware attack.

The bank has informed customers about a security breach it identified on August 30, 2021, which it claims it dealt with immediately.

“PCB responded promptly to disable the activity, investigate its source and monitor PCB’s network. PCB subsequently became aware of claims that it had been the target of a ransomware attack. On September 7, 2021, PCB determined that an external actor had illegally accessed and/or acquired certain data on its network,” the bank said in a statement.

Pacific City Bank added that it has been working with third-party forensic investigators to understand the nature and scope of the incident and to determine what information may have been accessed and/or acquired and who may have been impacted.

Investigations revealed that this incident impacted certain files containing certain PCB customer information. These files contained documents related to loan applications, such as tax returns, Form W-2 information of their employees, and payroll records. The bank told affected customers that their information was included as part of the supporting documentation of their employer’s loan application.

The bank said that personal information impacted may include some or all the following personal information, such as a customer’s name, address, Social Security Number, and wage and/or tax information.


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It is not known how many of the bank’s customers have been affected by the breach, which the company confirmed has been reported to the appropriate law enforcement authorities.

“As part of our ongoing commitment to ensuring the security of information in our care, we have conducted a thorough investigation into this incident and are continuing to monitor our systems’ security. In addition, we are working to review our existing policies and procedures, including our information security plan, to evaluate additional measures and safeguards to protect against this type of incident in the future,” the bank added.

The bank is also offering customers free credit monitoring services for a year as well as identity theft protection. Customers can also request a “security freeze” on the credit file by sending a request in by writing.

Rene Millman

Rene Millman is a freelance writer and broadcaster who covers cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and the cloud. He also works as a contributing analyst at GigaOm and has previously worked as an analyst for Gartner covering the infrastructure market. He has made numerous television appearances to give his views and expertise on technology trends and companies that affect and shape our lives. You can follow Rene Millman on Twitter.