The biggest nightmare that city managers, mayors, and city councils are facing in 2019 is not tax protests, police brutality, infrastructure decay, or crime — it’s the looming threat of ransomware.
Ransomware is when hackers lock down a municipal computer system so that city government can no longer function — can’t accept payments or issue any kind of license, or even pay its own employees. The hacker(s) then demand a ransom, anywhere from a few hundred to tens of thousands of dollars in untraceable cybercurrency, to release the city’s computer system so it can function again.
The only sure way to prevent this kind of criminal attack is to make sure the city’s computer system has the latest anti-hacking cyberware. And that costs a pretty penny. Towns ignore this option at their peril; dozens of towns across America have fallen victim to ransomware in the past six months, only because their backups and firewalls were outdated. The sums they have paid out now equal more than half a million dollars.
Is your town safe from a ransomware attack? There’s only one way to find out. Go to the next city council meeting and ask what measures are being taken about it. If you get a waffling answer, then you can bet your town is on the hacking hit list.