Info@NationalCyberSecurity
Info@NationalCyberSecurity

New Mexico institutions pay out thousands to recover from ransomware | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware


You’ve likely heard about ransomware before. It’s malware that hackers can use to seize control of computers, and then they demand money to give that access back.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — You’ve likely heard about ransomware before. It’s malware that hackers can use to seize control of computers, and then they demand money to give that access back.

Emergency procurement documents show New Mexico Highlands University recently had to pay out around $80,000 to get help recovering from an attack.

The New Mexico Administrative Office of the District Attorneys was also hit, and they had to pay around $60,000. That money went to hiring an expert to help them recover data without paying a ransom, and to figure out how the hackers go into the system in the first place.

“They’re attacking different organizations and using those attacks in different ways,” said Lorie Liebrock, director of the New Mexico Cybersecurity Center of Excellence. “So for some organizations, they’re using it to collect ransom because they’re forcing the person they’ve attacked, the company they’ve attacked, by saying, you’re going to have to report this legally. We’ve got you over a barrel, because if you don’t pay us, we’re going to out you. You didn’t report something.”

Liebrock says anytime you have a large digital data set, you’re far more likely to be a target for hackers. She says there is federal funding available through the State and Local Cybersecurity Grant Program to help states improve their cybersecurity.

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