11.18.21 / news

Cyberattack on Iristel

To Our Valued Customers and Partners,

On Monday, November 15th, as you already know, Iristel became the latest in Canada’s VoIP community to come under cyber attack. It was a network-level large scale Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack that attempted to make our services unavailable by overwhelming the network with traffic from multiple sources. 

The Russian-based “REvil” group – short for “Ransomware-Evil” – claimed responsibility and demanded a ransom payment. REvil is known as one of the world's most prolific ransomware gangs and has staged several attacks this year against major companies and organizations around the world.

I am pleased to report Iristel beat back the attack and our network was fully restored to optimum levels in record time, fewer than 48 hours, and no ransom was paid. 

Although Iristel is not the household telecom brand, we touch countless businesses and consumer lives with every minute we carry voice and data across the largest VoIP network in Canada. As such, you felt the impact of this paralyzing event. We work for you, and we take pride in connecting people, that is why we countered this with full force.

It’s only during these times – a crisis – that one truly realizes and fully appreciates the positive impact of our services, our customers, and our team.

You, our partner, have chosen us to support your customers. We strive to create a partnership built on quality, survivability, and trust. We take great pride in the integrity and security of our network.

I have spoken to many of you during this time. I heard you loud and clear. The vulnerability feeling caused by these attacks is very unsettling, but I refuse to be a victim. That is why we will tirelessly monitor and make our ecosystem even smarter, driven both by machine learning and human engineering excellence to prevent such attacks.  

I want to thank those carrier partners who have offered their support during these difficult times. 

We know this is not over for the VoIP industry as a whole. The DDoS threat will rear its ugly head again. Now we need to be an active part of the solution. We have already contacted cyber law enforcement agencies and will also share our experience with our carrier community as we feel being good stewards will help defeat these criminals and secure our communications’ future.

I have seen firsthand our team step up, work around the clock, and face this crisis head on with leading edge and outside-the-box solutions to restore services. I was reminded once again of Iristel’s immense strength and higher vocation to keep everyone connected no matter where they are.

I truly appreciate all of you who trust us to deliver your services. We will remain vigilant and defend our network.

Samer Bishay
CEO & Founder - Iristel

About Iristel

Iristel is Canada’s fastest-growing Competitive Local Exchange Carrier providing innovative communication services that are changing how consumers and businesses communicate. Founded in 1999, Markham-based Iristel operates Canada’s largest facilities-based local voice network extending Coast-to-Coast-to-Coast. It also owns Ice Wireless, an LTE-A carrier with operations in Canada’s northern territories and Quebec. Iristel also owns brands such as Sugar Mobile, an Over-the-Top (OTT) app where phone calls and text messages can be transmitted through data, and Télécommunications de l’Est (TDE), a company that operates a Nomad mobile network, a unique two-way radio digital trunking network built to meet the specific needs of Canada’s rural regions.

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or call 416-800-0010


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