Municipalities in trouble with ransomware attacks

Municipalities in trouble with ransomware attacks

Average value of ransom demands over $1M while highest demand at $5.3M

At least 174 municipalities globally were exposed to ransomware attacks this year, global cybersecurity firm Kaspersky said on Tuesday.

The average amount of the ransom demands was over $1 million while the highest demand was $5.3 million, the company said in a press release.

Ransomware — a kind of malware — locks or limits using computers’ hard drives until a ransom is paid to an illegal organization.

Kaspersky said long-term costs of these attacks are worse than these figures.

Fedor Sinitsyn, a security expert from Kaspersky, said: “When a city is attacked, it is necessary to conduct a case investigation and inspection and this adds additional costs.”

The number of attacks to municipalities and its side institutions rose 60% this year versus the previous.

Ransomware attacks affect both the financial structure of municipalities and the social life of people by interrupting municipal services.

“Paying criminals is a short-term solution that gives them both financial gain and encourages them to demand money again in the future,” Sinitsyn noted.

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