Florida City to Pay 42 Bitcoin in Ransomware Attack

Lake City, Fla., is the latest city to pay the ransom following a ransomware attack.

The city told local news station CBS 47 on June 26 that it would pay 42 bitcoin, equivalent to $460,000, to regain control of email and other servers seized during the attack on June 10. Lake City Mayor Stephen Witt noted that “insurance will cover all of it except $10,000.” However, he did note that the city would likely be hit with higher insurance rates as a result of the attack.

Earlier this month, the city was hit by a malware attack known as “Triple Threat,” which combined three different attack methods to target network systems. The attack knocked out many of the city’s systems, including email, landlines, and online payment portals.

Reports indicate that the hackers gained access to Lake City’s network when a city employee clicked on a malicious email link that then downloaded the malware.

This is the second time this month that a Florida city has chosen to pay the ransom following a cyber attack. Earlier this month, the city council in Riviera Beach decided to pay hackers $600,000 to retrieve city records. This decision follows the council approving $1 million to replace computers and hardware after the city was successfully attacked in May. As with Lake City, the hackers gained access to Riviera Beach’ network via a city employee clicking on a malicious email link.

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