Nearly two weeks after the city of Baltimore's internal networks were compromised by the Samsam ransomware worm (previously), the city is still weeks away from recovering services — that's weeks during which the city is unable to process utility payments or municipal fines, register house sales, or perform other basic functions of city governance.
Sean Gallagher does an excellent job of running down the economics and technology behind the rise and rise of ransomware attacks: ransomware has become a surefire way to turn a buck on virtually any network intrusion, and network intrusions themselves are trivial if you don't especially care whose networks you break into.
Unlike the Hollywood hospital shutdown in Feb and the Kentucky shutdown in March which got in by phishing attacks on employees, the two hospitals in Baltimore that were taken offline by ransomware were targeted by server-based attacks that got in through vulnerabilities in public-facing hospital services.
Yesterday, in Mark's post about new technology that could one day generate power from slow moving currents in rivers and oceans, commenter SamSam wondered whether "any weird and new generators ever get out of the lab and start providing meaningful amounts of power?" — Read the rest
"Gov. Deval Patrick wants to charge drivers by how much they drive on state roads, and at what times. How is he planning on doing this? By adding GPS units to cars, giving at least some state employees the ability to track cars where ever they go." — Read the rest