Money for Nothing: Ransomware Plagues Local Governments

Dennis Fisher writes:

The string of ransomware attacks against state and local government agencies that began to ramp up a couple years ago is continuing unabated, and the attackers in some incidents are becoming quite aggressive with their ransom demands.

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Data collected by security firm Barracuda on ransomware attacks shows that there were 55 attacks on governments through the end of August (excluding the Texas agencies, which had not been confirmed yet), and 38 of the attacks were on local governments and 14 were on county governments. About 45 percent of the municipalities hit by ransomware have fewer than 50,000 residents. This is likely not by chance. Smaller cities and counties have smaller budgets and fewer resources to devote to IT in general and security specifically. New Bedford is on the higher end of that population scale, with close to 100,000 residents, but the city still faced a tough challenge in dealing with the ransomware infection.

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