Ransomware attack hits Plainfield police, town hall computers | #malware | #ransomware

PLAINFIELD, Conn. (WTNH) — The town hall and police department in Plainfield are currently under a cyberattack and held hostage by hackers.

The first selectman declined to go on camera, but he told News 8 that officials believe it started around March 19. He said all the files were encrypted at the time, and the computers were shut down. At the police department, the phone system was also shut down.

Town officials are now working with the FBI and the state to resolve this situation. The hackers demanded $199,000 in Bitcoin to restore the computer systems, but they have not been paid.

“In the meantime, it’s meant a lot more work for folks around here,” town clerk Dianne Talbot said. “It’s been difficult, but we’re finding a lot of workarounds and learning as we go, so we’re making it work.”

“This has happened in other Connecticut towns,” Art House, an adjunct professor at UConn, said.

Cyber experts say you can prepare for these types of attacks. Oftentimes, though, towns and companies say they can’t afford to do so. However, once an attack happens, it could cost even more to recover from it.

The first selectman said what they didn’t do before, they will do now.

Watch News 8 starting at 5 p.m. to learn more about what officials are doing.

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