A serious cyberattack on Hackney Council systems causes outage for online services
A cyberattack on Hackney Borough Council in East London is causing another day of outages for online borough services. The cyberattack began about three days ago but the nature and extent of the attack have not been disclosed. Hackney Borough residents may not be able to access parts of the website, including One Account at this time.
There has been little information available about what data, if any, was accessed or who is responsible for the cyberattack. Unfortunately, this seems like a ransomware attack may be the culprit.
There has not been an update in two days. A notice dated 14 October on the Hackney Council website posted that some services are offline. Hackney Council says it is working with authorities and experts to restore systems. Services may be “unavailable” and people should only contact the council “if absolutely necessary”, it tweeted.
Hackney Council is working with the UK National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), UK National Crime Agency (NCA), and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to mitigate the attack. The cyberattack was reported to the Information Commissioner’s Office.
“We are aware of an incident affecting Hackney Borough Council” A National Cyber Security Centre post stated simply, “The NCSC is supporting the organisation and working with partners to understand the impact of this incident.”
What is Hackney London Borough Council?
Hackney London Borough Council is the local government for the London Borough of Hackney in London, England. The council website collects local tax payments, rent, parking fines, as well as other services. In addition to collecting taxes and fines. Hackney manages the 30,000 homes across the Council’s estates and street properties.
Recent UK Local Government Cyberattacks
Another local authority, Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council, was down for almost three weeks when it was struck by a ransomware attack in February. It cost over £10m to mitigate the cyberattack according to a report by the BBC.
It took Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council nineteen days to admit that they were the victim of a successful ransomware attack.
Today, the Hackney Council website’s One Account sign in page says that it is down for maintenance.
“We are learning more about the attack but are choosing not to share any more information at this stage in order to make sure we do not inadvertently assist the attackers,” says the post on the Hackney Council website.
Hackney Borough Council Cyberattack – What Should I Do?
The cyber attack cell on going and it is not clear who has control of her council systems.
people often use the same username and password across multiple online accounts. If an attacker is able to get into one account, they may use it to compromise more valuable accounts like online banks and credit cards.
- Residents should not enter payment card or bank account details into Hackney Council’s website until the matter is resolved completely
- Anyone who has used the Hackney Borough Council should monitor the bank balances immediately for fraudulent activity
- Report any suspicious transactions to authorities and your bank
- Change your username and password used on the Hackney Borough Council services
- Change any other username and password that was Hackney Council’s
- At this time, do not open emails that appear to be sent by the Hackney Council as they could fraudulent