A Lancaster city restaurant’s Instagram account was hacked early Friday morning, and the hacker continues to post about Bitcoin.
Starla Russell, one of the Horse Inn’s owners, said she woke at 7:30 a.m. Friday to around 40 messages from patrons and community members, asking what’s going on with their Instagram page because of the Bitcoin content. Bitcoin is a type of currency that’s digital and decentralized, according to its website.
Russell said she has spent the last four days trying to get the East Fulton Street business’s account back, with no success.
“Ten years of our diary from when we first started (is on Instagram),” she said. “I refuse to give up and start from scratch.”
The hacker posted on Friday, Saturday, and today for the page’s roughly 11,000 followers to see, Russell said. While she can’t see their account, she said she can delete posts through Meta’s Business Suite. Meta is a company that owns platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram, according to its website.
Russell said Instagram’s only phone number is for marketing, which she tried calling, but they couldn’t help her. She said she called Meta, the state police, and her attorney who all said they’d get back to her about it.
Russell also said she messaged the hacker, and the response was that the restaurant would have to pay $500 to get the account back.
Ransomware is the fastest growing type of cybercrime for businesses, according to the Global Crime Magazine. The number of cyberattacks is high because of the increase of remote work in recent years, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.