Ransomware Attack in California: Hackers Claim Responsibility
Hackers have claimed responsibility for a ransomware attack that hit the City of Torrance, California. The attackers say they used the REvil ransomware to encrypt the city’s data and demand a $1 million ransom to decrypt it.
The City of Torrance says it is aware of the attack and is working with law enforcement and cybersecurity experts to investigate. It is unclear how much data has been encrypted or whether the city will pay the ransom.
This is the latest in a string of ransomware attacks on municipalities in the US. Last month, hackers used the Ryuk ransomware to attack the City of Lake City, Florida and demanded a $460,000 ransom. The city ended up paying $500,000 to the attackers.
These attacks highlight the vulnerability of municipalities to cyberattacks
Hackers are increasingly targeting cities and towns because they know that these organizations often have limited resources to invest in cybersecurity. As a result, municipalities are often forced to pay large ransoms to get their data back.
Cybersecurity experts like Guardio say municipalities should invest in ransomware protection and have backup systems to avoid being held hostage by hackers.
Ransomware assaults have grown increasingly prevalent in recent years
In 2017, the WannaCry ransomware attack hit more than 150 countries, encrypting data on more than 200,000 computers. The attack caused billions of dollars in damage and disrupted vital services, such as hospitals and transportation systems.
In 2019, a ransomware attack on the City of Atlanta cost the city $2.6 million in ransom payments.
In 2021, the ransomware attack on the City of Torrance shows that these attacks are still a significant threat to municipalities.
Cybersecurity experts say that the best way to protect against ransomware attacks is to have backup systems in place and to keep them up-to-date. Additionally, cities and towns should invest in cybersecurity training for their employees. By taking these steps, municipalities can protect themselves from being held hostage by ransomware attackers.
67% of small businesses in the United States have been affected by a ransomware attack
According to the FBI, ransomware attacks have cost businesses more than $75 million in the past three years.
Ransomware attacks are often carried out by emailing a malicious attachment to an unsuspecting victim. Once the victim opens the attachment, their computer is infected with the ransomware. The attacker then demands a ransom from the victim to decrypt their data.
These attacks can be devastating for businesses, resulting in the loss of critical data, including customer information and financial records.
Ransomware attacks are often carried out by organized crime groups who have the resources and skills to carry out these sophisticated attacks.
These groups will often target small businesses, as they know that these organizations often lack the resources to mount a successful defence against these attacks.
To protect your business from becoming a victim of a ransomware attack, you should invest in a reliable cybersecurity solution. Additionally, you should train your employees to be aware of the risks associated with opening email attachments from unknown sources.
Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts data from the victim and requests money in exchange for it to be decrypted
There are many types of ransomware, such as Cryptolocker, WannaCry, and Locky.
Ransomware attacks usually happen when the victim clicks on a malicious email attachment, encrypting their data. The attacker will then demand a ransom from the victim to decrypt their data.
Once a computer is infected with ransomware, the attacker will demand payment from the victim to decrypt their data. The victim will often have to pay the ransom in Bitcoin, as it is difficult to trace.
Ransomware infections are challenging to prevent, but specific measures can help businesses protect themselves. These include:
- Educating employees about the risks of opening email attachments from unknown senders.
- Disabling macros in Microsoft Office documents.
- Installing and maintaining antivirus and antispyware software.
- Keeping operating systems and software up-to-date with the latest security patches.
- Creating regular backups of important data.
If you are a victim of a ransomware attack, do not pay the ransom. This will only encourage the attackers and may not result in the recovery of your data. Instead, contact law enforcement and seek professional help to remove the ransomware from your system.