JOPLIN, Mo. — Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been paid to secure Joplin’s sensitive online data after what city leaders are now calling a ransomware incident.
Early in July, the City of Joplin’s computer system faced mass outage and rendered online services inoperable for the public.
Although most of the city’s online systems have returned to normal since then other vital record systems – namely birth and death records – have not been fully restored yet.
To prevent sensitive data from being exposed, the city also authorized a $320,000 payment to what they refer to as an ‘unauthorized actor’ responsible for the ransomware.
According to a press release, the city has consulted third-part cybersecurity firms such as Stronghold Data to assist in investigating the incident.
The city says they are reviewing what data was accessed and the scope of the issue as a whole saying they will contact any individuals that may have been affected.
For security reasons and to prevent future attacks the city is excluding specific details about the hack for the time being.