City Hall Ransomware Attack Update

Update 4/5/2021

Ugh. Due to the recent hack of the City’s network, utility bills are being mailed out later than usual. The Utility Billing Department is working hard to have bills sent out as soon as possible. At this time, the due date and ACH payments for the current billing cycle are expected to stay on schedule despite the late mail-out. Should additional delays arise as the City continues to recover from the hack the schedule will be adjusted and customers will be notified. We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience as we continue to rebuild City operations. MMJ

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Update 3/29/2021:

After the hack (see below)City Hall’s computers and phones are slowly coming back online. Utility billing is open and is only accepting cash, check or money order. All other departments are open with limited computer access. Continue to use 911 for all emergencies. Text CPDLA, space, then your message to 847411 for police non-emergencies. In a practical sense, this has permanently replaced calling 892-8500. Check back for more updates.
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Update 3/15/2021

Dear Folks,

The Louisiana National Guard Cyber Restoration Unit worked continuously over the weekend with City Information Technology (IT) personnel. There remains no timeline for system functionality.  I am pleased to report that one member of the Guard shared that the City of Covington IT team is “one of top three we have ever worked with.” That’s nice … congratulations to IT Director Quenton Belanger, Police Chief Deputy Trey Mahon and IT-Man Aaron Hebert.

Police, Fire, Public Works, Cultural Arts and Events, Parks and Recreation and Facilities are all fully deployed and operational. Utility Billing and Finance (computer-based functions) remain severely hampered.

Continue to use 911 for all emergencies. Text CPDLA, space, then your message to 847411 for police non-emergencies. In a practical sense, this has permanently replaced calling 892-8500.

Last week’s hack was one of perhaps 30,000 that occurred. More details are available at CBS News Report.

Importance of Two-Factor Authentication: Lately we see more and more businesses asking us (as individuals) for two-factor authentication i.e. “text a code to your phone.” Regardless of this particular breach of security, one may now presume the bad guys have your personal information. It is just a matter of time before they make a play on your assets. The two-factor authentication is an important way to prevent them from using your information.