CHENANGO – On October 18 a cyber attack encrypted about half the computers operated by the Chenango County government with ransomware, locking down office computers and servers for a number of agencies.
More than 200 computers were impacted and hackers demanded a ransom of $450 to unlock the files for each, a total of about $90,000.
Officials said the county's systems are now about 75 percent restored with many key systems back online.
“We are not paying the ransom,” Director of Information Technology Herman Ericksen said, “We are working with Homeland Security.”
He said federal investigators are still reviewing the data but there was nothing yet discovered to suggest residents' personal data or employee information had been compromised. He said the attack appeared to have originated in Hong Kong.
Ericksen said the county's top priorities in the wake of the cyber attack was to restore effected systems involving key technology infrastructure, election systems and payroll.
On Tuesday the county hopes to bring a number of servers and additional departments back online, including taxation, the public defender's office, the county clerk's office, the probation department and mental health.