Officials in Somerset County, New Jersey, this week needed to arrange short-term Gmail addresses to remain in contact with residents after a ransomware assault disabled the municipal e-mail server and a number of other different providers.
According to a county press release, county places of work stay open and may be reached by telephone however officers have additionally shut down network-linked computer systems whereas the assault is remedied. The sort of malware used within the breach was not specified, however the incident makes Somerset County not less than the seventeenth U.S. native authorities to be impacted by ransomware this yr, according to the antivirus agency Emsisoft.
The assault, which was detected Tuesday, prompted the Somerset Board of County Commissioners to postpone its assembly that night till subsequent Tuesday, when it’s going to deal with the incident and the following response.
County courts and emergency providers, together with the native 911 answering middle, are persevering with to function usually, officers stated, however the e-mail outage did prolong to the county clerk’s workplace, which might probably hamper requests for mail-in ballots forward of New Jersey’s June 7 main. Voters can nonetheless request ballots by telephone or with an in-person go to, officers stated.
The methods used within the precise casting, processing and counting of ballots weren’t affected by the ransomware; officers stated voting machines and digital information associated to elections are by no means linked to the principle county community.
The state of affairs is anticipated to final not less than a number of extra days.
“It is our assumption that this example will stay in impact not less than for the remainder of the week,” County Administrator Colleen Mahr said in a press release.
Located about 50 miles exterior New York City, Somerset ranks as one of many wealthiest counties within the United States, with a median family earnings of $113,611.