February 2, 2023

Another ransomware attack crippled Costa Rica’s government just months after several ministries were affected in a wide-ranging attack by hackers using the Conti ransomware. This time, no ransomware group has taken responsibility until now.

In a statement, Costa Rica MOPT said that 12 of its servers were encrypted. Cybersecurity experts were called in, and all of MOPT’s computer systems were knocked offline.

Driving tests are still being conducted in person and while license issuance services were briefly disrupted, they are now being resumed.

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Several other agencies either severed their connections to MOPT in an effort to contain the attack or said services were limited due to the attack. The ministry posted a similar message on Instagram. Also, the country’s judiciary said it cut off its connection to MOPT, limiting the ability of the country’s traffic courts to function – downloading fines, tickets, and other files.

Just six months ago, in 2022, Costa Rica’s government drew national headlines after being attacked by hackers using the Conti ransomware.

A national state of emergency was declared in May, marking the first time a national leader responded to a cyberattack the same way they might respond to a military attack or natural disaster.

Conti ransomware and followed by Hive ransomware attacked the country’s health services, canceling schedules and erasing medical records, and the government refused to pay the demand of $10 million.

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