Lights On in Leicester: Streetlights in Disarray After Cyberattack

The city is stymied in efforts to pinpoint the issue since its IT systems were shut down in the wake of the cyberattack.

Dark Reading Staff, Dark Reading

April 24, 2024

1 Min Read
Victorian buildings, cars, and streetlights on Bishop Street in Leicester, England
Source: Jim Monk via Alamy Stock Photo

In the wake of a cyberattack that led to operational troubles, the city council for Leicester City, England, is still struggling with its city's streetlights failing to shut off.

Roger Ewens, a resident of Beaumont Leys, was among those who noticed the streetlights in Leicester were on day and night.

"I noticed that down Anstey Lane they're all on along one side but off on the other side," he said.

After reaching out to city council for a reason, Ewens was told that the cyberattack the city council suffered from was affecting the "central management system," causing the streetlights to "misbehave."

This latest development in the cyberattack fallout is of concern to locals because of the amount of energy the lights use, which likely is driving up the cost of electricity. Ewens was told in an email that the light issue should be resolved by the end of the first week of May.

A city council spokesperson reported that they are aware of the issue, which they attributed to a recent cyberattack. Because the city also had to shut down IT systems, it remains unable to "remotely identity faults in the street lighting system."

"The default mode for faults is that the lights stay on to ensure that roads are not left completely unlit and become a safety concern," said the spokesperson. "There are a number of steps required to resolve the problem, and we are working through these as quickly as we can."

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Dark Reading Staff

Dark Reading

Dark Reading is a leading cybersecurity media site.

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