Ransomware attack hits Goa’s flood monitoring system; demand crypto as payment | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Ransomware attack hits Goa’s flood monitoring system; demand crypto as payment

ByGerard de Souza
Jul 07, 2022 03:49 PM IST

In a complaint to the cyber cell, the state government’s water resources department that has been maintaining the data said that all its files have been encrypted and can no longer be accessed.

Goa’s flood monitoring system was hit by ransomware attackers who have demanded to be paid in cryptocurrency for the data on flood monitoring stations to be released.

The complaint was filed on June 24 but has come to light on Thursday. (File image)
The complaint was filed on June 24 but has come to light on Thursday. (File image)

In a complaint to the Cyber cell of the Goa Police, the state government’s water resources department that has been maintaining the data said all its files have been encrypted and can no longer be accessed.

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“Server has been under the cyberattack of ransomware. Under the attack, all files are encrypted with eking extension and cannot be accessed. In a popup and stored file, the attackers are demanding Bitcoins Cryptocurrency for the decryption of the data. The attack was carried out on 21 June 2022 midnight between 12am-2am. The integrity of the data has been altered making it impossible to back up the previous data. The server works on the 24x7 internet line and the attack was eased due to absence of antivirus and outdated firewalls,” the complaint filed by executive engineer Sunil Karmarkar revealed.

The complaint was filed on June 24 but has come to light today.

The data center server located at Panaji was storing data of the flood monitoring system at 15 locations on major rivers in Goa to monitor flood levels in rivers as a part of disaster management in order to have a control on floods eventualities.

The data of flood monitoring system, automated rain gauges and weather gauges get stored in the server located at the Water Resources Department Headquarters in the state capital while the servers were being maintained by ASTRA Microwave Products limited, Hyderabad.

As a result of the hacking, the department can now no longer access its data related to battery voltages of different stations, data packets related to 12 stations, has lost all its old data which can now no longer be backed up locally and has also lost real time data of the rivers currently in spate owing to the ongoing vigorous monsoon activity across the state.

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