Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Florida City Pays $600,000 Ransom to Hackers


Rriviera  Beach, Florida which is a suburb of the city of Palm Beach recently paid $600,00 to hackers to get their systems back online after the city was affected by a Ransomware attack.

The city was hit by a program via an infected email that had the script attached.  It proceeded to encrypt their hard drives and forced all digital systems to be reduced to analog paper based systems… this included emergency services, payroll, and water pump stations.  The town contacted IT experts who advised the community to pay the ransom due to the costs of restoring their lost systems, even though there was no guarantee that the hackers would provide the proper decryption password.

The decision was put to a vote and the citizens voted to pay the ransom.  Unfortunately while paying the ransom got the city back online, paying this kind of reward to criminals encourages further attacks.

The best defense for such types of attacks is reliable current backups.  Businesses such as healthcare practices remain vulnerable.

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