Excerpt below is from an article originally posted by Lehigh Valley Business.
A major cyberattack on Atlanta in March shut down city computers for five days, exposing critical vulnerabilities in the government system.
Days later, Baltimore was hit with a separate ransomware attack that required 911 dispatchers to manually dispatch calls. In May, the Idaho Legislature website was taken over by hackers who posted a manifesto on its website.
SecuLore Solutions, a cybersecurity firm based in Odenton, Md., that serves the public safety industry, has been tracking attacks on local governments across the country. The number of attacks on the rolling 24-month tracker keeps rising by about 10 percent a month, said SecuLore president and CEO Tim Lorello.
“When the ransomware damages go from $1 billion to $2 billion in one year, then you know that the criminals have a business and they’re operating at full force and we need to do something to respond to it nationally,” Lorello said. “On the other hand, you’ve got thousands of jurisdictions, and even the federal government doesn’t have the resources to support and protect them.”
As small and big municipalities and counties grapple with attacks in a changing digital landscape, going it alone may not be enough. In Aurora, Colo., city officials are helping spread the word that data security isn’t something local governments can ignore.
Aurora chief information security officer Tim McCain and internal audit manager Wayne Sommer wrote on a 2016 blog for the International City/County Management Association that cybersecurity is an iceberg looming before cities. Two years later, McCain reports that attacks are on the rise.
“They’re increasing in sophistication, they’re increasing in magnitude, they’re increasing in complexity,” he said. “Government as well as other favorable sectors for these people – nation states and hackers – is a big focus for them right now.”…..