By CoinWeek News Staff …..
Dickson, Tennessee, a small city located about an hour to the southwest of Nashville, fell victim this month to a sophisticated and virtually untraceable cybercrime when a Sheriff’s Office employee clicked on a malware-infused advertisement while streaming a local radio broadcast on a work computer.
The attack happened on the evening of Monday, November 3. The hacker, who identified himself as “Nimrod Gruber” demanded that a payment be made of $572 in bitcoin, or else the department’s files would be destroyed.
Detective Jeff McCliss, who handles the agency’s Information Technologies systems, told Nashville’s News Channel 5 that thousands of the department’s files were infected with the Trojan horse virus “Cryptowall”.
In total, more than 72,000 files were infected, including booking documents, equipment records and case files past and present.
According to Anti-Virus security service Symantec, “Cryptowall” encrypts files on infected computers and then demands a fee to regain access.
McCliss bought the $572 in bitcoin with his own money, and was later reimbursed after an 8-1 vote by city commissioners.
The infecting site has not posted an official statement regarding its role in the attack, nor whether it will reimburse the city for the expense incurred by accessing their site.
Staff news writer Chris Norman filed a report on the incident on November 4, 2014.
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WDKN Report by Chris Norman