Cyberattack cost foundry days of wafer starts

November 13, 2020 //By Peter Clarke
Cyberattack cost foundry days of wafer starts
The cyber 'event' reported by Tower Semiconductor Ltd. back in September cost the foundry 8 to 12 days of wafer starts, according to the 3Q20 financial results.

Tower reported 3Q20 sales revenue of $310 million, level with the prior quarter and down from $312 million in the same quarter a year before. The net profit was $15 million, as compared to $19 million in the prior quarter and $22 million in the 3Q19.

Tower said it took immediate action after a security incident in September and shut down all of its Israeli and US IT systems. These meant an immediate cessation of activities but in less than a week all facilities were operational again. There was no functional damage to work-in-progress and customer and company data was protected.

The impact of the event was between 8 and 12 days of missed wafer starts and multiple weeks of full fab activity levels, the company said. The company added that steps were taken to further secure the IT environment.

The outlook for 4Q20 is for revenue to be $340 million plus or minus 5 percent, equivalent to 10 percent quarter-over-quarter growth and 11 percent year-over-year growth.

Russell Ellwanger, CEO of Tower, said that growth would be driven by continued demand in the RF and power IC markets. "We look forward to 2021, with RF and power IC continuing the present trend and increases in both industrial sensors and power discrete served markets, as evidenced by customer demand forecasts, and backed by market research reports. This strength should couple well with our increased 300mm and 200mm capability and capacity expansions," Ellwanger said.

Related links and articles:

News articles:

Cyberattack will impact Tower's 3Q results

Report: Tower set to pay hackers to regain control

Cyber attack causes Tower to halt chip operations

Researchers compromise secure Siemens PLC in cyberattack

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