District of North Vancouver victim of ransomware attack | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

The District of North Vancouver says there’s no evidence of residents’ personal data loss, after the municipality’s networks were hit with an attempted ransomware attack earlier this week.

Early Monday morning, the district and its partner agencies were targets of the attack, DNV spokesperson Ryan Schaap told the North Shore News by email. Other organizations affected were North Vancouver Recreation and Culture, North Vancouver District Public Libraries, MONOVA and North Shore Emergency Management.

The attack was detected quickly and stopped shortly after it began, he said.

“Our network, some systems and some business applications were affected on Monday. Fortunately, there was little impact to our public services,” Schaap added.

During a ransomware attack, the victim unintentionally acquires malicious software – often via email – that aims to lock or encrypt data until a ransom payment is made.

Just after noon on Monday, the district posted on social media that “due to technical issues with our IT systems” a planned council workshop later that evening would be postponed to March 18. Another update on Tuesday said there would be a brief outage that evening “to address some technical issues.”

No other public updates were issued on the outage. Following the apparent attack, parts of the district’s website were inaccessible at times.

Schaap said network systems and some business applications were restored quickly by the district’s IT team. “As a result, there were minimal disruptions for staff and for our residents,” he said. “Systems began coming back online Monday morning and by mid-day Tuesday the majority of our systems were restored.”

No ransom was paid to the attackers, Schaap added.

An investigation into the attack by cybersecurity consultants is ongoing, he said.

“At this point there is no evidence of employee or resident personal data loss,” Schaap said.

“Like many organizations, we have been working over the last few years to strengthen our resilience to cybersecurity attacks,” he said. “Thanks to the ongoing efforts by district staff, this situation was dealt with quickly, which limited the impacts on the organization and on our municipality as a whole.”

This is a developing story. More to come …


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