Hackney Hacked as Council Investigates Attack

London’s Hackney Council has reported it has “been the target of a serious cyber-attack which is affecting many of our services and IT systems.”

According to a statement from Philip Glanville, mayor of Hackney, council officers have been working closely with the National Cyber Security Centre, external experts and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to investigate and understand the impact of the incident.

“This investigation is at an early stage, and limited information is currently available,” he said. “We will continue to provide updates as our investigation progresses. Our focus is on continuing to deliver essential frontline services, especially to our most vulnerable residents, and protecting data, while restoring affected services as soon as possible.”

Jake Moore, cybersecurity specialist at ESET, commented: “This bears all the hallmarks of a ransomware attack, but what we should be worried about is the new direction that threat actors are taking these days, where they not only encrypt the data but they threaten to release it too. Councils which may lack funding, and consequently may not have the strongest network protection, can be an easy target for those looking for vulnerabilities to exploit.

“Unfortunately, there is big money to be made and criminal hackers are quick to adapt and make their crime pay.”

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