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'How have they not sorted it out yet?': Metro Vancouver London Drugs stores closed for 4th day

The Canadian retailer discovered the "cybersecurity incident" on Sunday.
Metro Vancouver London Drugs stores are closed for another day on May 1, 2024 following a cyberattack over the weekend but customers can get prescriptions filled.

London Drugs stores in Metro Vancouver remain closed for a fourth day following a cyberattack and the company hasn't provided an update about whether personal data was impacted. 

The Canadian retailer discovered the "cybersecurity incident" on Sunday, April 28 and temporarily closed all its locations in Western Canada.

While it will help customers with "urgent pharmacy care," London Drugs remains closed for its forensic investigation. It is working with third-party cybersecurity experts to bring operations back online and investigating "the extent to which any data has been compromised in the incident," the company told V.I.A. in an update on Wednesday, May 1.

The company said Monday it did not believe the breach impacted customer data. However, it has since stated it will notify affected individuals if their information is compromised.

"In the event our investigation determines that personal information was impacted, we will notify affected individuals in accordance with privacy laws," the company said.

London Drugs advised customers Monday to call their local stores to have urgent prescriptions filled but later disabled phone lines as part of an internal investigation.

As of Wednesday, customers should continue to visit local stores during "regular business hours for immediate support" until the phone lines are back up. 

When will London Drugs open stores in Metro Vancouver?

London Drugs did not have an update for V.I.A. regarding when it will re-open stores in the Lower Mainland. 

Jamie Hari, the director of cybersecurity and DNS at the Canadian Internet Registration Authority, told V.I.A. in a previous interview that the company will likely grapple with the ramifications caused by the cyberattack for a while. He added that it must stay closed until any potential threat is resolved. 

"Health care is one of the more sensitive types of information to be breached," he said. 

While people's personal health information is less likely to be used for ransom, cybercriminals could use stolen data to blackmail London Drugs.

"London Drugs is an organization that is known to protect customer data," he explained. "Hackers could ask for ransom money for London Drugs to maintain its image."

Hari says hackers will use "anything and everything" that a company sees as valuable to get money.

London Drugs may also take a nod from MGM Resorts International — the target of a massive cyberattack in September 2023 — and provide customers with a free service to monitor their data.

Metro Vancouverites react to London Drugs closures 

Locals continue to express frustration with the London Drugs closure, with many expressing that the retailer provides a variety of services they rely on. 

A Vancouverite shared a post on X (formerly Twitter) about how he regularly sends people to the stores as part of his job.

"It's been [three] days! 75 locations across the country closed due to a cyberattack! How have they not sorted it out yet," he remarked.

Other people have mentioned that London Drugs has post offices inside of them, inconveniencing anyone waiting for a package. 

Some locals have provided tips to people struggling to get prescriptions at the eleventh hour. One man mentioned that it helped to bring his government ID and prescription packaging to get a refill.