Russian hackers behind cyberattack on council

A man on a computer

Gloucester City Council had to rebuild all of its servers after the cyberattack

Russian hackers were behind the “sophisticated cyberattack” that knocked out city services, it has been confirmed.

Gloucester City Council has now concluded its investigation into the attack that compromised their IT systems in 2021.

This caused damage to the council’s network and online services, with a number of systems taken offline.

The city council worked with cyber incident response experts.

Although some information held by the city council about the residents could be seen during the cyberattack, to date nothing has been published online.

They believe it is now unlikely that any information will be released based on advice the council has received from law enforcement.

“Hard time”

Jon McGinty, the council’s chief executive, said: “It has been a difficult time and I want to thank our residents for their patience and understanding.

“This criminal group has targeted our council to disrupt our public services with the aim of extorting a ransom from the council.”

The Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) previously reported that Russian-linked cybercriminals were behind the attack, this is the first time this has been officially acknowledged by the authority.

The council worked with the National Crime Agency and the National Cyber ​​Security Center, part of GCHQ, and advised the Information Commissioner’s Office to minimize any additional risk.

Earlier this year, the government sanctioned seven people associated with Conti, the criminal group suspected of being involved in the incident.

This group has also been behind attacks targeting several other organisations, including hospitals, schools, businesses and other local authorities.

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