Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Application Security //

Ransomware

1/15/2019
07:00 AM
Scott Ferguson
Scott Ferguson
News Analysis-Security Now
50%
50%

Texas City Hit With Ransomware

It's back to paper and pen for a while for Del Rio, Texas, which was hit with a ransomware attack earlier this month.

Ransomware knows no geographic bounds.

On January 10, the city of Del Rio, Texas, posted on its official website that its servers were hit by a ransomware attack, which had disabled most of the municipality's IT systems.

The Management Information Services Department, Del Rio's IT department, managed to isolate the ransomware attack, but this meant cutting off the Internet connections for all the city's departments and employees could no longer log in to various systems

For now, Del Rio is back to the analogue days of paper, pen and pencil to conduct city business. The FBI has been notified of the incident and the US Secret Service is also involved. It's not clear what type of ransomware hit the city's servers.

Del Rio is also investigating what happened and what, if any, personal data from city residents might have been compromised.

Downtown Del Rio\r\n(Source: Billy Hathorn via Wikipedia)\r\n
Downtown Del Rio
\r\n(Source: Billy Hathorn via Wikipedia)\r\n

"It is uncertain whether anyone's personal data has been compromised. This is uncertain as to both employee data and customer," according to the city's website.

At least some of the city's IT systems remained offline as of Monday, January 14. A notice on the town's website urged residents to pay their utility bills at city hall and they would need to pay in cash or by check.

When ransomware attacks increased in 2017, thanks to the rapid spread of WannaCry, the incidents largely focused on private businesses, which have the money and motivation to pay the ransom. At the same time, private enterprises can keep these attacks under wraps. (See Cloud Backup: How It Can Protect Against Ransomware.)

However, as Security Now noted last year, ransomware is increasingly showing up in public venues and facilities, including Baltimore, Atlanta, the Port of San Diego and the Port of Barcelona. Due to the nature of government, it's difficult, if not impossible, to keep an attack secret from the citizens these agencies serve. (See Ransomware Attacks Target Public & Government Orgs With More Frequency, Ferocity.)

Del Rio, which is the county seat of Val Verde County in Texas, has a population of about 40,500 and is home to Laughlin Air Force Base. It might not be as large as Atlanta or Baltimore, but the attack shows that ransomware can appear anywhere and cripple systems even if no money is ever paid out to the attackers.

Related posts:

— Scott Ferguson is the managing editor of Light Reading and the editor of Security Now. Follow him on Twitter @sferguson_LR.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Edge-DRsplash-10-edge-articles
I Smell a RAT! New Cybersecurity Threats for the Crypto Industry
David Trepp, Partner, IT Assurance with accounting and advisory firm BPM LLP,  7/9/2021
News
Attacks on Kaseya Servers Led to Ransomware in Less Than 2 Hours
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  7/7/2021
Commentary
It's in the Game (but It Shouldn't Be)
Tal Memran, Cybersecurity Expert, CYE,  7/9/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
Enterprise Cybersecurity Plans in a Post-Pandemic World
Download the Enterprise Cybersecurity Plans in a Post-Pandemic World report to understand how security leaders are maintaining pace with pandemic-related challenges, and where there is room for improvement.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2021-39229
PUBLISHED: 2021-09-20
Apprise is an open source library which allows you to send a notification to almost all of the most popular notification services available. In affected versions users who use Apprise granting them access to the IFTTT plugin (which just comes out of the box) are subject to a denial of service attack...
CVE-2021-41083
PUBLISHED: 2021-09-20
Dada Mail is a web-based e-mail list management system. In affected versions a bad actor could give someone a carefully crafted web page via email, SMS, etc, that - when visited, allows them control of the list control panel as if the bad actor was logged in themselves. This includes changing any ma...
CVE-2021-34650
PUBLISHED: 2021-09-20
The eID Easy WordPress plugin is vulnerable to Reflected Cross-Site Scripting via the error parameter found in the ~/admin.php file which allows attackers to inject arbitrary web scripts, in versions up to and including 4.6.
CVE-2021-41082
PUBLISHED: 2021-09-20
Discourse is a platform for community discussion. In affected versions any private message that includes a group had its title and participating user exposed to users that do not have access to the private messages. However, access control for the private messages was not compromised as users were n...
CVE-2020-16630
PUBLISHED: 2021-09-20
TI’s BLE stack caches and reuses the LTK’s property for a bonded mobile. A LTK can be an unauthenticated-and-no-MITM-protection key created by Just Works or an authenticated-and-MITM-protection key created by Passkey Entry, Numeric Comparison or OOB. Assume that...