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Seattle Public Library shuts down online services after ‘ransomware event’ | #ransomware | #cybercrime


The Seattle Public Library took its online catalog offline Tuesday, including e-books, public computers and in-building Wi-Fi, as it investigates a “ransomware event” affecting its technology systems.

According to Seattle Public Library, the “ransomware event” was noticed early Saturday morning, one day before it planned to take its systems offline for server maintenance on Memorial Day. The disruption impacted access to both staff and public computers, plus the online catalog, e-books, Wi-Fi and website, the library said.

“The Library quickly engaged third-party forensic specialists, contacted law enforcement, and took our systems fully offline to interrupt and better assess the nature and impacts of the event,” Seattle Public Library wrote online. “With our external partners, we continue to investigate the source of this disruption and are working as quickly and diligently as we can to confirm the extent of the impacts and restore full functionality to our systems. Privacy and security of patron and employee information are top priorities.

“Until we can ensure the security of these systems, they will remain offline. We do not yet have an estimated time of resolution but will update you here as we are able to bring systems back online.”

Seattle Public Library did not further explain the incident or say if any data was compromised.

All libraries are open as scheduled Tuesday.

Seattle Public Library noted that people are welcome in to check out physical books, CDs and DVDs.

“Our hard-working staff, whose jobs have become more challenging without technology access, are ready and able to assist you to check out materials and use our spaces and amenities,” the library wrote. “Although you cannot currently place holds, you are welcome to pick up holds already on the shelves.”



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