Health

London Drugs president tight-lipped over recent cyberattack

The doors are open again at London Drugs retail stores across Western Canada, but the president and chief operating officer’s lips are sealed about the nature of the cyberattack that forced the closure of the company’s 79 outlets more than a week ago. 

Clint Mahlman says the company “can’t and won’t” release details about the attack that closed its stores on April 28, because doing so would put the company further at risk. 

“These attacks have very consistent patterns,” he told CBC’s Ian Hanomansing in an exclusive interview, in which he referred to “international threat actors.” 

“One of those methods is they monitor media and they look at media, social media, customer speculation as forms of intelligence to further determine if they can attack us through different ways and through different leverage points.”

London Drugs stores started to reopen over the weekend, and all locations had reopened by Tuesday. 

Mahlman said the investigation into the attack is ongoing. 

It’s unclear why London Drugs was targeted, he said, but he noted that the company is targeted by thousands of cyberattacks each day. 

WATCH | London Drugs president says investigation will take months: 

‘We really don’t know’ why London Drugs was targeted in cyberattack, president says

Clint Mahlman, president and chief operating officer of London Drugs, says the investigation is ongoing and his company will work to re-open ‘in a safe, secure and methodical way.’

‘No evidence’ customer data was compromised

Mahlman said experts are sifting through “massive” amounts of data but at this time, he said, “we have no evidence that a customer database has been compromised.”

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However, he said, there are no guarantees and the investigation will likely continue for months. 

“I can never guarantee 100 per cent because no organization can ever reasonably guarantee 100 per cent with the level of sophistication and resources that these international threat actors are deploying.”

He assured customers that London Drugs has employed the best expertise and technology in the business to keep their data safe. However, as long as customers have access to profiles and its systems, there is always an entry point for hackers. 

“We have every belief that we have done everything humanly possible and technically possible,” he said. 

If there are any concerns around customer information, the company will contact people directly, Mahlman said. 

Staff paid during closure

Staff continued to be paid during the multi-day closure, Mahlman said. 

He added that the company went ahead with employee anniversary celebrations, including recognizing its first 50-year staff member. 

“We wouldn’t allow these threat actors to take away that celebration of these hard-working people,” he said.

WATCH | Retired employees stepped in to help after cyberattack, president says: 

London Drugs president gets emotional while praising employees

Clint Mahlman, president and chief operating officer of London Drugs, praised his current employees — and several retired employees — who helped the company deal with the recent cyberattack.

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