Websites for the Texas court system were still down Monday after a ransomware attack late last week left the network temporarily disabled, according to the Office of Court Administration.
Officials discovered the breach early Friday and quickly shut down sites and disabled servers to contain it, the office said in a statement. The hack did not impact e-filing and other services, many of which have been transferred to the cloud in recent years, according to the office.
“At this time, there is no indication that any sensitive information, including personal information, was compromised,” the office said. It added that websites for local trial courts are still available online.
The office said it detected the breach early and has refused to pay any ransom. While the courts have moved increasingly to remote hearings amid the coronavirus pandemic, the attack was unrelated, according to the office.
Officials have not said when the system will be back online, but they have set up a temporary website and are working with law enforcement and the Texas Department of Information Resources to investigate the attack.
As the story notes, this is not the first time that Texas governmental entities have been targeted by ransomware. The first thing that TDIR will need to figure out is whether this was actually targeted, or just a crime of opportunity, perhaps the result of someone opening a phishing email. If you follow this sort of news, you know that ransomware attacks are on the increase around the world; here’s a prominent recent example. I’m sure the system will recover from this, and good for the OCA if they detected it quickly. We just need to up our vigilance and defensive measures to stay on top of this.