Authorities in Johannesburg, South Africa, has refused to yield to the demand of hackers who asked the region to pay 4 bitcoins (appr. $37,000 at press time) to regain full access to municipal systems.
According to an Oct. 29 CNN report, the hackers breached the city’s online electronic platforms, including billing and payments systems, resulting in such payments being relegated to only cash for the meantime.
Following the breach which took place last Thursday, the hackers allegedly sent emails to government employees requesting the payment of bitcoins in exchange for relinquishing their control of the systems.
However, the city’s authorities were to going to yield to any such requests, opting instead to assemble local IT and international forensic experts who have now restored 80 percent of the attacked systems.
Given that recovery result and the fact that the Oct. 28 deadline given by the hackers has now past, Johannesburg city council member Funzela Ngobeni reiterated they would not yield to the hackers.
He reportedly said,
The city will not concede to their demands for bitcoins, and we are confident that we will be able to restore systems to full functionality."
He also referred to the cyberattack as one against the city since the hackers targeted a period when the systems were under load from citizens paying utility bills and authorities issuing payments.
In a similar development, Stmarket.co reported in June that Lake City, a city in Florida, paid 42 Bitcoins as a ransom to hackers who invaded the region's computer systems.