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23 Local Governments Affected by Ransomware

We have discussed ransomware many times in the past. We’ve discussed both companies infected and also new strains of ransomware hitting the Internet. If you do not remember any of them just see the links below:

Most recently, 23 local governments have been affected by a coordinated ransomware attack. The 23 governments are part of the state of Texas. The investigation has been ongoing, but it looks like they have identified that the entry point was through an email with links and attachments. For that reason, the Texas DIR (Department of Information Resources) urged computer users not to click through or open attachments in unsolicited emails, to check email sender details, to use unique and strong passwords on all accounts, to alert supervisors about any suspicious activity and lastly to take advantage of cybersecurity training.

The Verge published that the bad guys were looking for $2.5 million ransom to unlock the files. Based on that, it is estimated that this specific attack was not random, but well organized and targeted.

As you can see, ransomware is still out there and is being utilised to get money out of governments and companies. Also, email is still the prefered method of delivering the payload through links and/or attachments. Therefore, be vigilant of all your incoming emails, mainly those wants which ask you to click or open attachments. Stop, think before you click. Don’t forget that your company’s last defence is it’s people, so make sure you understand the human factor of cybersecurity, and ensure that all of your users are properly trained in security awareness, lest you let ransomware through your walls.

And as always, be safe out there and until the next Malware Monday.

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