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  • Writer's pictureAnup Ghosh

CA Town Declares Cyber State of Emergency After Ransomware Attack

The Download

In what may be a first for an American city, the city manager of Oakley CA declared a state of emergency following a ransomware attack on February 22, 2024. Though no emergency services such as 911, police or fire were affected, the city manager declared the state of emergency "out of an abundance of caution" which allows the City's Emergency Operations Center to be activated.

The state of emergency declaration, normally reserved for calamitous acts of nature, allows the municipality to “provide extraordinary police powers, immunity for emergency actions, authorize issuance of orders and regulations, activate pre-established emergency provisions, and is a prerequisite for requesting state or federal assistance.” IT systems have been taken offline to facilitate the incident response and recovery.

In perhaps a coincidence, or perhaps not, StateScoop reports that nearby Pleasant Hill also in Contra Costa County, CA, also reported a "cyber incident" also on February 22nd which city officials say was contained before any online or emergency services were affected.



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