Most UK councils hit by cyber attacks

A study has revealed that most UK local authorities have suffered cyber attacks in the past year, showing local government is a key target for cyber criminals and that legacy software is a top security concern

 An iGov survey of 38 local government departments has revealed that 76% have experienced a cyber attack and 50% have been hit by a ransomware attack in the past year.

The survey revealed a lack of understanding about cyber attacks and how to counter them at a local government level, according to the reportcommissioned by cyber security firm Malwarebytes.

In turn, this has led to falling confidence in a number of measures currently employed to combat cyber attacks, the report said, with most councils saying their existing legacy systems were inadequate to deal with modern threats.

“The threat of cyber crime is on the up, driven by career criminals who are highly skilled, innovative and will stop at nothing to target organisations that hold people’s private information,” said Anthony O’Mara, vice-president for Europe at Malwarebytes. “This was perfectly demonstrated by the recent WannaCry attack and the devastating effect it had on the NHS.”

According to O’Mara, other high-profile incidents, such as the ransomware that crippled Lincolnshire City Council, provide further evidence of just how devastating this type of crime can be.

Continue reading…