Ransomware brought down the municipal system of Atlanta to the ground for several days. Many departments are still reeling from the aftershocks of the attack and dealing with ransomware removal. But from the response of all the pertinent authorities, it seems as if nothing has happened. Adding insult to injury, the recovery from the ransomware disaster is also being masqueraded as a success by many.
No personal data was compromised in the attack and this has been sold as a success by local government, not accounting the network shutdown which severely disrupted day-to-day operations of several departments.
Residents couldn’t pay their bills for almost a week, city government itself couldn’t collect fines of parking tickets, the police department travelled back in time and resorted to hand written reports, all thanks to the ransomware attack. But the local authorities are joyous because no personal data was compromised during the attack.
The Attack was Long in the Making
This callousness of authorities was in place way before the attack. Some experts think that the attack wouldn’t have been possible if the administration took necessary cyber security measures in time.
For instance, email record of the city government’s IT department shows that they were warned of the looming ransomware attacks as early as February 2017. There were reports of malware infiltrations in city servers and the administration was informed several times regarding this cyber loophole in the system.
It is also important to note that even before the Atlanta’s municipal lockdown, ransomware attacks were making headlines. From 2016 to 2017, ransomware attacks were increased by more than 90 percent while related losses surged from $325 million to $5 billion.
All this information was easily available in the public domain. It had also been established that the attackers targeting networks where ransomware removal would take a lot of time and therefore the affected parties would agree to pay them to restore ransomware files.
In the case of Atlanta, the authorities didn’t pay anything to the operators (a right thing to do). But due to incompetent IT workforce, it took more than a week to complete ransomware removal and recovery operations.
For assistance on file recovery, please contact MonsterCloud Cyber Security experts for a professional ransomware removal.