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Criminal Justice

Russian-Affiliated Hackers Target California’s Finance Department

Written by Garrett LeahyPublished Dec. 12, 2022 • 2:27pm
California's Department of Finance was a victim of a cyberattack, state officials announced Monday.

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California’s Department of Finance announced Monday that it was the victim of a cyberattack.

Cyber News reports that Russian-affiliated ransomware group LockBit has claimed responsibility for the attack.

The Governor’s Office of Emergency Services is leading the response to the cyberattack. The office said no state funds were compromised, and it is coordinating a multi-department response.

“Upon identification of this threat, digital security and online threat-hunting experts were rapidly deployed to assess the extent of the intrusion and to evaluate, contain and mitigate future vulnerabilities,” the spokesperson from the emergency office said in an email.

The attack comes as the Jan. 10 deadline for Gov. Gavin Newsom’s state budget plan looms. The incident will not affect preparing the plan, the spokesperson said.

Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks at a press conference on Feb. 9, 2022, in Oakland. | Aric Crabb/MediaNews Group/East Bay Times via Getty Images

The office did not share other details about the incident.

LockBit has allegedly obtained data from hundreds of high-profile organizations and threatened to leak it if demands were not met by Dec. 24, according to reporting by KCRA.

A report from Digital Shadows, a digital security firm, found that LockBit had more than 200 victims during the third quarter of 2021, and claimed responsibility for an attack against automotive giant Continental in November.

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Garrett Leahy can be reached at [email protected]


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