Davidson County Hit With Ransomware

Another ransomware attack strikes again: this time in Davidson County, North Carolina. County computers were infected with a strain of ransomware last Friday.

This particular strain of ransomware is called Samas and infected 70% of the county’s 90 servers and an unknown number of laptops and desktops.

County Manager Zeb Hanner said, "Some of the servers, because of the size, are taking us a little while because they have several terabytes of information. We're just waiting for those to finish restoring."

Davidson County’s chief information officer, Joel Hartley, was notified around 2:30AM on Friday that 911 Emergency Communications had some suspicious activity in its system. It was discovered that while no data was stolen, all of their files had been encrypted. They were then demanded to pay an undisclosed amount in Bitcoin and given seven days to pay the ransom.

Hartley is working with the FBI on a criminal investigation to determine a point of entry.

"We will not rest until this incident is resolved in its entirety," Hanner said in a statement. "We are continuing to work with law enforcement in their ongoing investigation. Further, we will take appropriate steps to prevent these attacks in the future."

While Hanner is unable to provide a specific time for the county to be fully back in operation, it shouldn’t be much longer.

"County staff has been working diligently to address issues created by that attack. ... Our primary focus continues to be to ensure the prompt delivery of all essential services to our citizens."

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