There’s no doubt that technology has taken over our lives. From industries right down to our homes, technology plays an important role in making our everyday life easier and faster. However, many people have realized that technology can be used for unlawful reasons too, and this realization has given rise to hackers with cybercrime.
Ransomware hacking attacks have been on the rise recently and there’s no definite way of putting a stop to this cybercrime. The main objective of such attacks is to steal crucial information and then demand a ransom in return. Just a few months back, Florida had to deal with two such incidents, and this has taken a toll on its financial budget.
Two separate ransomware attacks were carried out against Lake City and Riviera Beach and the hackers were able to do some great damage. The attack crippled the computer systems for more than two weeks, and that’s when the city had to take dire measures.
May 29 proved to be an unfortunate day for Riviera Beach after a city hall employee opened a malicious email, which crippled the city’s computer systems for weeks. When the hackers contacted the city insurer, they agreed to pay the ransom of 65 Bitcoin that amounts to almost $900,000.
The attack on Lake City was carried out on June 10 and all it took was a malicious email. An employee in City Hall opened the email, which infected the Lake City systems. This attack was dubbed the Triple Threat as this attempt combined three methods to target the network systems. As soon as the concerned authorities realized the severity of the action, they disconnected all the computers. However, 10 minutes had already passed and the ransomware virus managed to lock down the servers and the email accounts of the city workers.
The attack disabled all the other Lake City networks too, but fortunately, the Public Safety services weren’t affected. There are different servers for police and fire departments, which contained the extremity of this attack.
Not long ago, the hackers contacted the city and announced their demand of 42 bitcoins, which is equal to $600,000. With an extensive load of crucial information in their hands, the city had no choice but to fulfil the demands of the hackers. The only good thing to come out of this tragic attack is that the hefty payment was mostly covered by insurance. Only $10,000 of the payment had to be taken out of the taxpayers’ money.
By paying hackers, cities are setting a trend, which is further encouraging hackers all across the globe. Instead of paying these criminals, it’s better for such organizations to have backups available that’ll help them negate the effect of these cybercrimes.