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The 10 Biggest Ransomware Attacks of 2019

Multinational manufacturers and U.S. city and county governments spent more $176 million responding to the biggest ransomware attacks of 2019, spending on everything from rebuilding networks and restoring backups to paying the hackers ransom.

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7. New Bedford, Mass.

Recovery And Mitigation Costs: Less than $1 million

The city of New Bedford in July was hit with a variant of the Ryuk virus that affected 158 of the city’s 3,532 desktop and laptop computers, encrypting data stored on servers and workstations. The hackers initially asked for $5.3 million in bitcoin, and New Bedford countered with an offer to pay $400,000.

The attacker rejected New Bedford’s counteroffer outright, so the city went about restoring from backups, which was relatively easy due to the low number of infected systems and the fact that no critical systems had been impacted. Attackers hit during the night when most of the city systems were turned off, preventing the ransomware from spreading through the entirety of the network.

New Bedford’s insurance company has spent “in the hundreds of thousands” on recovering from the ransomware attack, Mayor Jon Mitchell told The Standard-Times. But the city expects its $1 million cybersecurity insurance policy with AIG will cover the full cost.

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