Suspected drug dealers were the unlikely winners after ransomware hit Florida's Stuart Police Department. Officials refused to pay the $300,000 ransom demand, and 6 suspected criminals walked free.
The Police Department mostly restored operations after a cyber attack in April 2019, but one and a half years of digital evidence was lost.
The cyberattack forced the State Attorney's Office to drop 11 narcotics cases because evidence was lost.
The attack locked investigators out of critical evidence that could have locked up the suspected drug dealers for years. Unfortunately, losing evidence is now common when hackers hit a police department. This is the worst case scenario.
"Those cases included 28 charges against six different defendants for crimes including possession of meth, possession of cocaine, selling, manufacturing, or delivering various narcotics..."
This attack underscores the high cost of network downtime and ransomware attacks on our government offices.
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Original article here.
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