The state is adding to its protection against hackers following a massive March ransomware attack.
Georgia has added a new layer of protection against hackers by purchasing the largest cyber insurance policy in the United States. The coverage is a component of the state’s new strategy against cyberattacks. Last March it fell victim to a ransomware attack.
The Georgia Department of Agriculture’s website was taken down unless the state would pay.
Hackers demanded $50,000 in the ransomware attack. Despite the hackers’ demands, the state would not pay the ransom. Instead, Georgia turned to its cyber insurance policy for coverage and support. The state has purchased $100 million in cyber insurance coverage.
This, as reported by Politically Georgia. The report stated that Georgia’s policy is the largest of its kind in the United States. It detailed the state’s response to the attack. An investigation team and a tech team were dispatched to erase and reload all sixty of the infected computers. The infection was traced back to December 11.
The attack was the first time the state had ever made a claim on its cyber insurance policy.
The policy provided Georgia with the support required to recover the Department of Agriculture’s compromised systems so they could be up and running again eleven days later. The annual premium of the policy costs the state $1.8 million.
Following closely on the heels of the Department of Agriculture’s cyberattack was another high-profile attack in Atlanta. Atlanta City Hall employees were instructed not to turn on their computers on March 23. Their system had been breached and ransomware was demanding $50,000. This compromised the city’s airport WiFi, city courts could not process traffic ticket payments and other systems were unavailable. That said, sewage treatment, 911 emergency lines and many other critical systems were left operational.
Officials found no evidence of a link between the two ransomware attacks. Since Georgia officials admit that there is nothing that can be done to stop a truly determined hacker with enough knowledge and skill, they opted for adequate insurance coverage to take care of the issue instead.
Georgia’s huge cyber insurance policy is meant to protect taxpayers in the state from having to cover the cost of cyberattacks to state and city computer networks and systems.