Security Services Charlotte

Today the City of Greenville, NC has been effectively knocked offline by a Ransomware / Malware attack. Additionally, Tuesday Genesee County, Michigan was hit with a Ransomware attack requesting a Ransom of 4 million dollars for the key to un-encrypt the infected equipment.

There are about 10 things that your IT Dept. should do in order to limit or eliminate your exposure to Ransomware attacks.  As part of our Managed Services agreements all our clients networks are locked down.  Although we can not predict the future of Malware / Ransomware, none of our clients have had any exposure to the costly impacts of these types of attacks.

More information regarding the two referenced attacks -

Greenville, N.C., has effectively been knocked offline by a ransomware attack with the city IT department having shut down the majority of its servers to limit the extent of the attack.

In a Facebook post city officials said the incident began on April 10 and TheReflector.com reported a city spokesperson a ransom note was received but did not reveal further details on that aspect of the situation. Additionally, the city has brought in cybersecurity help from other municipalities and that they were prepared to go several days without computer support in order to get to the bottom of the situation.

“We will gradually be bringing them back online in an effort to evaluate the impact of the virus and evaluating all of our options for remedying the situation,” the city posted on Facebook.

The ransomware was first spotted by a member of the police department who notified IT who decided to pull the servers offline. Police, fire and emergency communications along with the Greenville Utilities Commission are unaffected as they operate on a separate network.

The city also made it clear that it is still functioning and all departments are there to help its residents.

“It is important to note that computers don’t run cities. People do. All of our operations are continuing, although we are having to adjust some of the ways that we do things in some areas,” was posted on Facebook.

Genesee County, Michigan

Genesee County, Michigan was hit with a ransomware attack on Tuesday and the county has been working non-stop to get their systems back online. Unfortunately, this process turned out to be more difficult than expected and system are still down.

It is not known what ransomware they were affected by, but officials stated that their email was hacked and that the only way to contact the county was via phone.

Due to this attack, the county had shut down their computer systems as they worked on restoring their data from the attack. This had led to county service outages and ABC12 reports that signs have been posted on doors and windows indicating that the county was unable to process payments or perform other duties that required a computer.

 

By Kyle Elworthy, Network Essentials Charlotte, NC