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Police Department of U.S. Virgin Islands become victim of a ransomware attack


A ransomware attack has been waged against U.S. Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD), thus compromising its servers and network. Police Department of U.S. Virgin Islands shared that this ransomware attack takes place in April 2019.


The FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) is working to assist the Virgin Islands police deal with effects of this April 2019 ransomware cyberattack, as per Jason Marsh, the acting Police Commissioner.


Marsh added that the police department is yet to identify the source of this ransomware attack. However, the Police Department of U.S. Virgin Islands refused to pay any ransom amount to the cybercriminals, and is right now working with Federal Bureau of Investigation so as to try decrypting the encrypted files.


"A lot of our files got corrupted, so we did notify the FBI and we are working with them to try to unencrypt the files that we can," said Marsh on June 25, 2019.


Marsh said the ransomware attack has targeted the servers of police department that contain the citizen complaints as well as internal affairs records; and even though the files have been encrypted, none of them were actually stolen.


"Once we realized what occurred, we took everything offline so no one's personal information was compromised," said Marsh. Right now the Police Department of U.S. Virgin Islands is working in setting up their infrastructure so that any information does not get compromised, added Marsh. He added that it is for the first time this kind of attack has targeted Police Department of U.S. Virgin Islands.


Additionally as the networks and servers of VIPD become corrupted due to the ransomware infection, so the police department was unable to access "IAPRO" and "Blue Team" programs for a number of weeks. This causes major work disruptions as well as delays. The IAPRO system's backups also become corrupted, thus causing the police department to install one new centralized version of the IAPRO.


"The backups of the IAPRO system were corrupted and VIPD is working with the FBI to recover the information. The VIPD is working diligently to ensure that the system is fully operational and accessible," read the court report, as reported by Government Technology.


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