- Travis Central Appraisal District was hit by a cyberattack last week. The agency confirmed the attack on September 19.
- The attack is associated with a ransomware virus, and the District has decided to work on restoring the files instead of paying a ransom.
Details of the attack
Travis Central Appraisal District is responsible for providing the value of real and business personal properties in the county.
- The attack is said to have impacted website property search, email, phone, and Computer Assisted Mass Appraisal systems.
- The attack, that happened at 9:30 pm on September 11 was confirmed by the agency on September 19.
- Daily operations such as customer services and appraisal protests were not affected by this attack.
- A ransomware virus is believed to be associated with this cyber attack. Many files were encrypted and rendered inaccessible to the server, causing certain services of the agency to stop working.
What did the agency do?
As soon as the attack was detected, the agency isolated the affected systems and notified the cybersecurity officials as well as state agencies.
- The District refused to pay the ransom and is working with experts to restore operations.
- Backup data was stored in offshore locations by the District. This is being used to restore system functionality.
- Primary systems are reported to be restored. The District assured that officials are working on restoring secondary systems soon.
- The District is engaging with cybersecurity experts to analyze the attack and to implement preventive strategies so similar attacks don’t recur in the future.
“We continue to restore secondary computer systems and work with cyber security experts and state agencies to identify the parties responsible for the cyber-attack,” said Marya Crigler, Chief Appraiser of Travis Central Appraisal District in the media statement.
No evidence of data breach
There is no evidence of any confidential information being breached during this attack. There is also no indication of the virus propagating to other systems.