A CORK businesswoman whose Instagram account was held for ransom by hackers has thanked the public for their support after she regained almost 10k followers in just ten days.
Charlene Corkery, the owner of Box of Kindness, discovered last week that her Instagram page had been hacked.
As a result, she lost access to the account which had accumulated over 14k followers and was now under the control of hackers.
The hackers contacted Charlene and demanded €10,000 for the return of the page, however, she refused and set up a new account.
In just ten days, the new Instagram page (@box_ofkindness) had almost 10k followers.
Speaking on the support of the public since the attack, Charlene said she was “struck for words”.
“Even though I knew it was going well and we sell a lot of boxes, you don’t think people realize or kind of notice your brand,” she said.
It had taken Charlene one year to gain 14k followers on the original Box of Kindness Instagram page, where she made 80% of her sales.
Charlene said with the help of the support, she is feeling a lot better.
“It’s just nonstop messages from businesses and individuals seeing if they can help in any way.”
Instagram has since contacted Charlene directly to apologise for the situation and the original account, which was under the control of the hackers, has now been removed.
With the business set to mark its one-year anniversary on Sunday, Charlene said she is feeling “very positive” following the support for the new page.
“We took quite a blow losing that platform, but it goes to show what people think of us as a business.
“That meant the world to me because they didn’t come for a competition, they didn’t come for a freebie. They came for us as a business and I’m so grateful.”