Cyberattack on Christie’s: art faces digital challenges

In early May, Christie’s auction house suffered a cyber attack. This incident reveals the vulnerabilities of cultural institutions in the face of digital threats, and underlines the urgent need to reinforce their security measures.


Christie’s, the renowned British auction house, was recently the target of a cyber attack that led to the temporary closure of its website and the postponement of certain auctions. The incident, which occurred on May 9, highlights the vulnerabilities of cultural institutions in the face of digital threats, while underlining the need for enhanced security measures.


The site remained down and no communication was made to the public until May 12, when Guillaume Cerutti, CEO of Christie’s, sent an e-mail to his customers informing them of a “technological security incident”.


To ensure continuity of operations, Christie’s quickly set up a temporary website providing basic information on items for sale and telephone numbers for customers.


“We are managing this incident according to well-established practices, supported by experts in the field. We have taken proactive decisions, including taking our main website offline,” said Guillaume Cerutti.


Live bidding has been maintained through telephone and in-person participation options, despite the unavailability of the main site. “Our customers for these sales will be able to bid securely in person, by phone or online via Christie’s Live,” the executive added.


Sales and logistics impacted


The cyber attack came at a crucial time for Christie’s, during a busy week of high-value art auctions, estimated at around $840 million. The auction house usually generates almost half its annual sales during this busy week.


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Featured photo : © Shutterstock

Picture of Hugues Reydellet
Hugues Reydellet
Hugues Reydellet is a young and passionate journalist whose favorite subjects are economy, culture, gastronomy, but also cars, and sports. With a sharp pen and an insatiable curiosity, Hugues is constantly on the lookout for new hot information to report.

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