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Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, ICE

City of Atlanta Under Ransomware Cyberattack

The city of Atlanta’s computer network was hacked recently by cyberattackers demanding an unnamed ransom amount. The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security have launched an investigation while Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms warned city employees to monitor their bank accounts for unusual activity.

“We don’t know the extent, so I would ask for people to assume that you may be included,” Bottoms said in a news conference. “Our information management team is working with the FBI, homeland security, also external partners from Microsoft and Cisco Cybersecurity incident response team to help resolve this issue. We have been working diligently all day long to try to come to some type of resolution.”

“This attack has encrypted some of the city data, however, we’re still validating the extent of the compromise,” said Richard Cox, the city’s chief operating officer.

According to Engadget, ransomware locks and holds computers ransom for a specified amount of money, usually cryptocurrency. The site reports attackers are asking for $50,000 in bitcoin from the city.

Born and raised in Compton, California, Jessica Bennett began her career as an intern at The Oakland Post, and later, The Source Magazine. She went on to write for respected hip hop publications such as DJ Booth and Hip Hop DX before becoming the Urban Editor of pop culture website, Wetpaint.com. She joined Ebony as the Entertainment Editor August 2017. Bennett has interviewed such names as Vanessa Williams, Spike Lee, Tyra Banks, Forest Whitaker, Magic & Cookie Johnson and several others.