Mecklenberg County (N.C.) officials reported some progress toward restoring government computer services following a ransomware attack last week and did not do so by paying the ransom demanded by the cybercriminals.
County Manager Dena Diorio issued a statement on December 11 saying 16 applications affecting the Department of Social Services, Criminal Justice Services, payroll processing and Public Health had been restored by the county’s IT department using back up files. However, several county system still remain affected and the county does not know when all systems will be back online, Rick Christenbury, Mecklenburg County spokesman, told SC Media.
Christenbury was adamant that the county did not pay the ransom in order to get back online, although Diorio had alluded to doing so when reporting the attack last week unless the county was able to get back up and running on its own.
“The County chose NOT to pay the ransom,” he told SC Media.
The ransomware attack took place on December 5 and initial news reports cited county officials as are considering paying the ransom, which equated to just over $25,000. The entire county’s computer system was knocked offline forcing it to move to older methodologies to keep operating.