Philabundance loses nearly $1 million in cyberattack

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Philabundance, the region's largest hunger-relief group, announced Tuesday it lost nearly $1 million in a cyberattack.

The organization says thieves infiltrated its computer systems in the spring through a phishing scam.

Philabundance has since hired a cybersecurity expert and trained employees to be more vigilant. It says its online donation system is safe and secure.

READ MORE: Philabundance released this statement on the incident:

"Recently, Philabundance was the victim of cybertheft. We have conducted an internal investigation and are collaborating with the FBI and the Philadelphia Police Department in an attempt to identify the perpetrator(s) of this crime.

This fraud was a one-time event and did not involve the day-to-day finances of our organization or any personal information of staff. Nor did it did affect our online donation system. Our donors can trust that their donations through that online platform have reached us and will continue to reach us, and will be used to feed the hundreds of thousands of people in our area who do not get enough to eat on a daily basis.

We have enhanced our IT security systems and financial controls to protect every single dollar we raise. We are being both thoughtful and aggressive in putting these safeguards in place to make sure this never happens again.

It's increasingly difficult for any operation - nonprofit or for-profit - to protect itself from cybercrime. And it's unfortunate that we have been preyed upon as a social philanthropic organization and must increase our security efforts. We are encouraging other nonprofit organizations to do the same.

We thank you for your understanding and support as we mitigate the damage caused by this crime and continue to provide services to those in our community who need our help."
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