Auto Dealerships Are Still Battling The Effects Of An Industry-Wide Cyberattack

( — According to a segment on CBS News last Tuesday, more than half of the car dealerships in the country were continuing to deal with the aftermath of a massive cyberattack on June 19 that affected the company that provides software systems to dealerships in North America.

Car dealerships throughout the US and Canada experienced multi-day disruptions when CDK Global, the company that provides software to thousands of dealerships, was hit by back-to-back cyberattacks on June 19, leading to outages that continued to affect many of the company’s operations several days later.

The Illinois-based CDK Global provides software to car dealers to manage daily operations like vehicle sales, repairs, financing, and auto insurance. The company provides software to 15,000 dealerships in the US and Canada.

According to CBS News, CDK Global announced in late June that it had restored systems for some dealerships but many others remained offline and it was unclear whether all of their systems would be up and running again before the end of the month.

CDK Global confirmed on June 25 that the cyberattack was a “ransom event.”

The hackers responsible for the attack are linked to the group BlackSuit, according to cybersecurity firm Recorded Future.

The cybercriminals reportedly demanded tens of millions of dollars from CDK Global, which agreed to pay the ransom.

Maryland-based Pohanka Automotive Group CEO Geoffrey Pohanka told CBS News that his software systems had still not been restored by June 27, leaving the tools his car dealerships depend on to track inventory, make sales, or maintain customer relationships inoperative for over a week.

Data analytics firm JD Power said in late June that it was updating its forecast for new vehicle sales for the month by as much as an 8.2 percent decrease over the same period last year, not because of a lack of consumer demand but from the impact of the cyberattack on CDK Global.

According to JD Power’s president of data and analytics Thomas King, auto sales that would have occurred in June will now be added to the forecast for July.

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