City of Fort Worth website hacked, but officials haven’t seen ‘sensitive information’ leak | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #hacker

Fort Worth officials said Saturday that one of the city’s websites has been hacked.

In a news briefing, city officials said they were informed Friday afternoon by the Texas Department of Information Resources about a post from a group that claimed to have gained access to the city’s data.

Kevin Gunn, the city’s chief technology officer, said the post provided links to copies of the data and that the city has confirmed the information “did originate from our computer systems.”

According to Gunn, the hackers gained access to a city website that facilitates maintenance work orders for the city’s transportation, public works, parks and recreation and property management departments — “not from the city’s public-facing intranet website.”

“It appears the hackers downloaded file attachments to work orders within the system,” Gunn said. “And those attachments include things like photographs, spreadsheets, invoices for work performed, emails between staff, PDF documents and other related materials for work orders.”

He said one example of that information is photos of potholes that needed repair. Gunn said city officials have found “no indication that there has been sensitive information” released.

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Gunn said the post came from the threat actor SiegedSec, which said in its post it is targeting Texas because of the state’s stance on gender-affirming care. Earlier this month, Gov. Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 14, which bans such medical care for minors.

The group’s statement, which was posted on the Telegram messaging app and shared on Twitter, also says the hackers accessed police reports.

Gunn said it appears the hackers stole login information to get into the system, but officials do not know how they did so.

He said it’s important to note that it does not appear the data was downloaded by accessing any of the city’s servers, databases or disk storage on its corporate network.

The investigation into the hack is ongoing, Gunn said, and the city is working with law enforcement and computer forensic experts. The city’s IT department has removed the website’s access from the external intranet and has forced its users to reset their passwords.

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The attack comes almost two months after the city of Dallas was targeted in a ransomware attack that “significantly impacted police and compromised other city services.” The group behind that attack, Royal, also was responsible for a 2022 ransomware attack against the Dallas Central Appraisal District.

On Friday, Dallas’ online library catalog was restored. Officials said earlier in June that the work to restore systems and services was more than 90% complete.

Unlike in Dallas, Gunn said, no ransom has been demanded from the city of Fort Worth, and officials have not detected any encryption of files.

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