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Christie’s was forced to delay its Geneva Rare Watches auction by one day after being targeted by hackers. | Source: Hodinkee
Christie’s was forced to delay its Geneva Rare Watches auction by one day after being targeted by hackers. | Source: Hodinkee

Hackers target watch high-profile watch auction

Christie’s was forced to delay its Geneva Rare Watches auction by one day after being targeted by hackers.

The sale was expected to occur on 13 May; however, a security breach prompted the auction house to take down its website.

The company hired outside security experts to aid with the breach. CEO Guillaume Cerutti reassured participants that there was no need for alarm.

“Christie’s has experienced a technology security incident,” he said.

Remi Guillemin, Head of watches
Remi Guillemin, Head of watches
"These results demonstrate the passion of international collectors for exceptional timepieces."
Remi Guillemin, Head of watches

“I want to assure you that we are managing this incident according to our well-established protocols and practices, with the support of additional security experts. This included, among other things, the proactive protection of our main website by taking it offline.”

Despite the delay, the sale went ahead the following day, with eight watches from the private collection of Formula 1 icon Michael Schumacher selling for $USD4.4 million ($AUD6.64 million).

“These results demonstrate the passion of international collectors for exceptional timepieces,” head of watches Remi Guillemin said following the auction.

The highest return for a timepiece at the auction was a 1948 Patek Philippe reference 1518, which returned $USD2.7 million ($AUD4.08 million). 

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