Atlanta hit with ransomware cyberattack


The city of Atlanta has suffered a ransomware attack on Thursday, which resulted in outages of some of its customer facing applications, including some that customers may use to pay bills or access court-related information.

They urged employees to check their bank accounts to make sure their financial information had not been accessed and said that anyone who had conducted transactions with the city could be at risk. City officials first received the hacker's ransom note early Thursday morning amid the system outages, which continue to persist. The city's water department and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport computer systems also seem to have escaped the hack.

The attack has locked city officials out of critical files across various departments and even applications that allow customers with the city to pay bills.

Cox noted that it's not clear if personal information was compromised in the ransomware attack and as a precaution, he advised city employees to monitor and protect their personal information.

"At this time we are actively working with the FBI, (the U.S. Department of Homeland Security), the Microsoft and Cisco incident response teams and other federal partners", she said.

Though officials haven't released details regarding the sum being requested, local news station 11 Alive reported that hackers have demanded $51,000 in bitcoin to unlock the systems. The city's public transportation system has also not been affected.

"All of us are subject to this attack". The ransom price has not yet been revealed, or the city's intention of whether or not to pay up.

"Because we don't know, I think it would appropriate for citizens to be vigilante in checking their accounts", she said.

On the ground in the city are officials from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and even the Secret Service.

At the same news conference, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms described the cyberattack as "a very serious situation".

The City of Atlanta is the latest victim of a large-scale ransomware attack, though it could have been worse without the cloud, according Atlanta's chief information officer.