Atlanta lockdown revives ransomware fears

Though utilities have dodged the brunt of the latest SamSam resurgence, experts say the event serves as a troubling reminder of cyber risks to vital systems like those running the power grid.

“Critical infrastructure owners should be alarmed and use Atlanta as a case study for more investment in cybersecurity,” noted John Dickson, principal at the San Antonio-based network security firm Denim Group Ltd. He added that “the worry right now is not [website] defacement, not data loss, but actual disruption to the point where you can’t operate your business.”

For local governments, the possible responses to a successful ransomware attack are “grim and grimmer,” Dickson said. He pointed out that small municipalities and related government organizations can be hard-pressed for information technology funding and tend to fall at the tail end of the security adoption curve.

“Unless local governments have a sophisticated backup and recovery operation, the options are to pay or start over,” he said.

About Denim Group

Denim Group is the leading secure software development firm, serving as a trusted advisor to customers on matters of software risk and security. The company builds software for the most security conscious while helping organizations assess and mitigate risk within their existing software. Denim Group's flagship ThreadFix product accelerates the process of software vulnerability remediation, reflecting the company's rich understanding of what it takes to fix application vulnerabilities faster. Denim Group has emerged as a strong contributor to the larger application security community and has actively participated in the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) since shortly after its inception.

Among many other awards, Denim Group has landed on the "Inc. 5000" list - which recognizes the country's 5000 fastest-growing private companies - for five years in a row. In addition, the San Antonio Business Journal named Denim Group as one of the "Best Places to Work" in the city.

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