Mayors around the country join forces to fight hacker ransoms

Above 225 mayors across the US have backed a resolution to not shell out ransoms to hackers, as reported by The New York Times. The resolution, titled “Opposing Payment To Ransomeware Attack Perpetrators,” states that the mayors stand “united against paying ransoms in the event of an IT security breach.”

The resolution came out of the yearly US Conference of Mayors, which took location in Honolulu from June 28th by July 1st. In accordance to the statement, at least 170 county, city, or state government programs have been targeted by ransomware attacks given that 2013. These attacks use malware applications that render programs inoperable, with the hacker(s) ordinarily demanding payment in the type of cryptocurrency in exchange for restoring programs.

The resolution comes following virtually two dozen US cities had been hit by ransomware attacks this yr, together with Lake City, Florida, which authorized a payment of 43 bitcoins to a hacker in buy to regain entry to its cell phone and e mail programs. One more latest, large-profile assault started in Baltimore in May well, which shut down vital city programs by means of a phishing email. The hackers accountable demanded 13 bitcoins (all around $76,280 at the time, and now estimated at all around $151,599) from the city. But Sheryl Goldstein, the mayor’s deputy chief of workers for operations, was advised by the FBI to not shell out the ransom mainly because “we would bear much of these costs regardless.” It is estimated that the assault has expense the city at least $18 million.

Baltimore Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Youthful sponsored the measure at this year’s conference, saying in a statement on Wednesday, “Paying ransoms only gives incentive for more people to engage in this type of illegal behavior.”

The US Conference of Mayors represents one,407 cities, just about every with a population of in excess of 30,000. A universal stand towards paying out lousy actors is aligned with the recommendation from the FBI, and it could discourage long term attacks towards the cities whose mayors have backed the measure.

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