By John Ensor •
Published: 08 Sep 2023 • 11:38
Credit: Artem Oleshko/shutterstock.com
THE digital age has brought in many innovations and benefits, but also a certain vulnerability as the council of Sevilla has recently discovered.
A cyber attack on Sevilla’s computer system has brought all municipal activities to a standstill, forcing workers to revert to traditional methods of pen and paper, writes OK Diario.
The severity of the attack has even led to the postponement of this month’s ordinary Plenary session to Thursday, September 28, citing ‘the current situation of the communications network’.
Juan Bueno, the delegate of Finance, Citizen Participation and Digital Transformation and spokesman for the City Council, expressed his regret to the citizens of Sevilla for the disruptions caused. ‘We have already filed the complaint with the National Police,’ he announced on Thursday.
Importantly, there’s no current evidence suggesting that citizens’ personal data has been compromised or lost. The council has conveyed a message of calm, emphasising their commitment to work with utmost caution and assurance.
The halt in services has been a preventive measure, rather than a direct consequence of the cyber attack. Bueno disclosed, ‘we already know the origin and only three affected computers have been detected.’
Hackers managed to obtain the VPN keys of a corporate network user, believed to be a local policeman. They gained access to this user’s computer and the systems they were authorised to use. Notably, they didn’t breach the council’s main security barrier, but merely the keys of this individual user.
Additionally, the culprits encrypted servers, which, in reality, form a minuscule portion of the council’s resources. These servers housed applications and, crucially, no personal data. Plans are underway to restore the service swiftly, ensuring maximum security.
The restoration process will be phased, as they need to secure over 4,000 computers and nearly 800 servers to ensure complete safety. The council expressed gratitude to their internal teams and external partners, stating, ‘thanks to the teams of personnel of the City Council and external who are working tirelessly to return normality to our administration as soon as possible.’
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
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