A well known European hotel has admitted it had to pay thousands in Bitcoin ransom to cyber-criminals who managed to hack into and then take control of the hotel’s electronic key system, locking hundreds of guests out of their rooms until the money was paid.
A report by the English-language European news outlet The Local says the four star hotel, Romantik Seehotel Jaegerwirt located on a lake along the Alpine Turracher Hoehe Pass in Austria, said it decided to go public with what happened to warn others of the dangers of cyber-crime.
Last week unknown hackers used ransomware to attempt to lock guests of the hotel out of their rooms by hijacking the central key management system.
The people staying at the Austrian hotel couldn’t use their key cards to enter their rooms once the system had been breached and it was also not possible to program new key cards.
The establishment’s reservation system and the cash desk system were also affected.
The hotel said it had no choice but to pay the requested ransom of 1,500 EUR ($1,605)in Bitcoin to resolve the issues as quickly as possible in order to resume normal operations.
Once it transferred the money, all systems came back up again.