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Ransomware Holds Captive PC-files of Collinsville Police

A strain of ransomware recently attacked the PC-network installed at the Collinsville, Alabama, USA Police Department keeping all folders and directories locked till the time the scammers would be paid a hefty amount of cash demanded, published softpedia.com dated June 24, 2014.

To carry out the assault, a phishing e-mail was used that an employee clicked through and viewed its attached file containing malware. The malware disseminated onto 7 PCs followed with locking vital files, particularly crime scene videos or shots of criminal mugs, until money would have been paid.

Gary Bowen, Head of Collinsville Cops said that no money would get paid despite malfunction potentially occurring with the backup mechanism from where a larger portion of the encoded files could be retrieved, while the department possibly being required for beginning work right from the start. Softpedia.com reported this.

For investigation, the department took help of Federal Bureau of Investigation's cyber cell.

Rex Leath, Assistant Head of Collinsville Police stated that FBI had probably detained one Russia-based man who once upon a time had connection with the ransomware scammers. The hack could occur through an electronic mail with certain attachment that when opened enabled access for the perpetrators, he explained. Softpedia.com published this.

Assistant Professor, Dr. Diana Dolliver of University of Alabama's Criminal Justice Section stated that similar assaults targeted several police departments, with a few that even paid the money demanded for restoring their data-files' access. Gadsdentimes.com published this dated June 23, 2014.

According to Dr. Dolliver, within one cyber-assault against an agency of law enforcement at Massachusetts, the latter made a $750 payment as ransom to the criminals who demanded it for giving back all folders and files of the department.

Dr. Dolliver suggests that such ransoms be not paid since even when the files would get returned they wouldn't be in their original state.

According to her, when crooks acquire admission into computer files of police departments, they may well alter the information contained inside those files, while also use the information to do harm similar as utilizing any crime witness' e-mail id from a particular case.

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