Computer hack cost Pennsylvania’s Senate Democrats $700,000; others pay less-costly ransoms
Deb Erdley reports:
Pay now, or pay later.
Leaders of the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Caucus faced those options when hackers infected their computer system in March 2017, holding it hostage with ransomware.
Officials at the Westmoreland County Housing Authority faced the same dilemma when hackers held their computers and phones hostage in July. The Housing Authority paid a ransom of $6,500 through a single Bitcoin, a digital currency that allows users to exchange money anonymously over the internet.
Senate Democrats balked at a demand for 28 Bitcoin — valued at just over $30,000 when the lockout began — and adhered to the FBI’s advice against paying ransom.
Instead, state records released to the Tribune-Review through a Right-to-Know request revealed taxpayers underwrote the $703,697 Microsoft charged to rebuild and enhance the system.
Read more on TribLive.