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A cyberattack took offline websites of the Georgia agency

A Georgia state agency confirmed that a cyberattack has brought offline some court websites. According to local media, hackers infected the systems of the Georgia Administrative Office of the Courts with ransomware,

“News outlets report hackers demanding a ransom infected computers with malware at the Georgia Administrative Office of the Courts.” reported the Associated Press. “Agency spokesman Bruce Shaw said Monday that officials have “quarantined our servers and shut off our network to the outside.”

The Georgia Administrative Office of the Courts provides services to some local probate and municipal courts.

The website of the agency (www.georgiacourts.org) was offline earlier this week, while the websites for the Georgia Supreme Court and court clerks in the larger counties of the state were up and running.

“Hackers have infected computers at a Georgia courts agency, demanding a ransom payment and causing officials to shut down court websites.” reported the AJC website.

“The Administrative Office of the Courts was offline Monday as the state government tried to contain the hack.”

At the time of writing, it wasn’t clear the extent of the attack in term of impacted Georgia courts and interference with ordinary operations.

Agency spokesman Bruce Shaw pointed out that users’ data were not exposed because the Georgia Administrative Office of the Courts doesn’t users details apart from information in public court documents.

“Personal information wasn’t compromised because the agency doesn’t keep that information, said Michelle Barclay, a division director for the Administrative Office of the Courts.” concludes the AJC website.

“Everything is shut down until they tell us to turn it on,” Barclay said. “We’re definitely inconveniencing folks who rely on our applications.”

The attack was discovered during the weekend, experts believe it was launched from a foreign country.

The attackers sent an email to the agency with instructions to contact them, the message didn’t specify a ransom amount.

This incident follows other similar attacks on government systems, such as the one that hit the city of Atlanta and the Georgia Department of Agriculture.

County and state courts were operational, but they were unable to access information provided by the Administrative Office of the Courts, Allen said. He didn’t know how long it will take to recover from the attack.

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