Cornwall’s cyber infrastructure attacked daily

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By Nick Seebruch
Cornwall’s cyber infrastructure attacked daily

CORNWALL, Ontario – Cyber security. It is becoming a more frequent problem for municipalities in North America. As recently as June 30, the municipality of The Nation, near Casselman, Ont., had their systems hacked with ransomware.

Ransomware is a virus that leaves computer systems inoperable, and typically comes with a demand, the ransom, for money in order to have those systems released.

Cornwall, like any other municipality, has had it’s own cyber security infrastructure tested and has had to prepare to defend itself from such attacks.

“The City of Cornwall’s cyber security infrastructure stops approximately 2,000 cyber threats every day and every 30 seconds this infrastructure is externally scanned for vulnerabilities by cybercrime activity,” said Elsie Bissonnette the City of Cornwall’s Information Technology & Telecommunications Supervisor in an email to Seaway News.

The municipality spent around $85,000 a year on cyber security, that money pays for firewalls, web filters, artificial intelligence, anti virus, anti spam, external,internal and virtual security policies and fortified backups.
It also covers cyber security training for the Mayor, council and municipal employees. Bissonnette said that there have been attempts to defraud municipal employees, unsuccessfully.

“There have been attempts to defraud the corporation with these types of scams and they were unsuccessful as the affected parties had participated in cyber security training,” she said.

Mayor Bernadette Clement said that she has gone through cyber security training and that it is something that is constantly updated in terms of infrastructure and training.

“It is a concern,” she said. “I always get the feeling that you need to be constantly adapting.”

The Mayor went on to say that she believed that this should be always top of mind.

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