The city of Pensacola, Florida, was hit by a ransomware attack, and authorities are still trying to determine if the hackers stole data from the affected systems.
Early reports from Pensacola mentioned that the city administration fell prey to a cyberattack, but no specifics were released. Now, the city officials say that Pensacola was hit by Maze ransomware.
Attackers who use ransomware usually settle for encrypting the target’s operating systems, then demanding payment to unlock them. In a few cases, the ransomware attack is used to steal data as well, either to sell it on the dark web or to persuade the victims to pay up.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) is the agency that identified the ransomware as Maze, which was used in an earlier attack on Allied Universal, a security staffing firm with more than 200,000 employees. Interestingly, no ransomware note was sent, and the victims were directed to use Tor (decentralized anonymization network) to contact the attackers.
Affected systems in Pensacola included the public emails and phone numbers, along with online payments, but emergency safety services remained unchanged.
The attack in the Allied case used stolen data to convince the victims they were the real perpetrators. So far, Pensacola city administration has seen no such proof.
Finally, law enforcement agencies have to consider the proximity of the cyberattack to the shooting that took place at the Navy Air Station just 24 hours prior, but a link has yet to found.