Officials in the City of Dallas have disclosed that its system's servers have been disrupted by a ransomware attack, impacting the website of its police department, as well as the department's computer assisted dispatch system, CBS News Texas reports.
The intrusion, which is believed to have commenced with a phishing email, has been claimed by the Royal ransomware group, which admitted to encrypting critical data and warned that such information would be leaked should the city fail to meet its demands.
Royal ransomware is one of the most prolific ransomware operations today, with the group associated with up to 10% of all ransomware attacks across the U.S., according to Emsisoft threat analyst Brett Callow. U.S. local governments were also noted by Callow to have been impacted by 29 cyberattacks so far this year.
"In one instance after an attack on a police department, the ransomware gang threatened to release details about police informants to the criminal organizations on which they were informing," Callow added.