Alcohol sales disrupted in Sweden after reported ransomware attack

An employee and customers at Sweden's alcohol retail monopoly, Systembolaget
An employee and customers at Sweden's alcohol retail monopoly, Systembolaget Copyright Systembolaget
Copyright Systembolaget
By Roselyne Min
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Sweden’s alcohol retail monopoly says 15 per cent of its sales volume has been impacted.


Wine and spirit distribution in Sweden has been disrupted after a logistics company was reportedly the victim of a ransomware attack.

The company, Skanlog, works with Sweden’s alcohol retail monopoly Systembolaget and the incident has disrupted supplies.

All alcoholic beverages risk being affected by the attack throughout the country, which means consumers may have a smaller selection to choose from for a short period, Systembolaget wrote in a press release.

For customers who have ordered items impacted by the supply disruption, the orders are being cancelled.

“It affects about 15% of our sales volume. Wine and liquor most of all,” Sofia Sjöman Waas, a press officer at Systembolaget, told Euronews Next.

Systembolaget says it’s currently working with other distributors to solve the shortage.

“We are accustomed to handling small to large scales of disruptions even though they are rarely on this scale,” Waas said.

“We have many other items delivered to us as usual via other distributors. Therefore there will continuously be many alternatives available at our stores,” Waas added.

‘Ransomware attack’ caused distribution issues

The logistics company Skanlog told Swedish media that it first identified a ransomware attack by hackers based in North Korea on Monday morning (April 22).

It was not clear how they determined a possible source, and Skanlog did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

“We have been centrally attacked by a cyber attack, which has caused our entire system to be down until we can fix it and get it back up,” Skanlog’s Swedish CEO Mona Zuko told local media Dagens Industri.

Ransomware is a type of malicious software that typically encrypts the victim’s data, making it inaccessible, and demands payment, often in cryptocurrency, to restore access.

“Our systems, including our central business system, have been affected by the attack. We use a Microsoft financial system, and an inventory system called Dynaman which is critical to our operations,” the Swedish CEO told Dagens Industri.

Skanlog distributes to Systembolaget via two warehouses in Jordbro near Stockholm and Eskiltuna.

“There’s currently no deliveries from us,” Zuko told Sweden’s public radio Sveriges Radio.

Skanlog is a Nordic company owned by a Danish family with operations across the region.

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