In September, a raft of cyber disruptions hit the South American nation.
In order to combat the spread of a virus that fraudulently encrypts files, the Chilean judiciary shut down 150 computers. Despite assurances from officials that most court procedures were unaffected.
The incident is the most recent cyber disruption to afflict the nation of South America. A ransomware attack on Chile’s consumer protection agency began on August 25, and just a few days ago. Hundreds of thousands of emails stolen from the military’s Joint Chiefs of Staff were made public online.
The legal system claimed on Monday that a phishing email opened on Sunday night was to blame for the Cryptolocker Trojan spreading throughout its network. Only 1% of the computers used by the court system were compromised, according to court administration official Zvonimir Koporcic. Affected systems ran Windows 7 and had McAfee antivirus installed. He announced, “We are switching the antivirus.”
In a press conference on Tuesday, Supreme Court spokesman Vivanco said no loss of data and described the event as “not a significant attack.” She claimed that the threat actor who created the Trojan was unknown to the authorities.
According to the Chilean news outlet Meganoticias, justices in two Supreme Court chambers have started utilizing their smartphones in place of the court’s computers.
Despite Microsoft’s persistent advice to customers to upgrade every time it releases a new operating system, statistics keeper Statcounter reports that 11% of Microsoft computers are running Windows 7. In 2009, Microsoft released Windows 7, and by 2020, technical assistance was no longer available. Vivanco claimed that the court system’s inability to replace the 3,500 Windows 7 computers was because of lack of funding. We certainly have a lot of expenses, but we are not a judicial system with a lot of resources.
A separate alert from the nation’s computer response team, or CSIRT, warned the government agency of an increase in network scans looking for vulnerabilities.
The hacker collective “Guacamaya released 366 terabytes of military emails. Army Gen. Guillermo Paiva, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, resigned as a result of the hack. The organization issued a statement criticizing colonialism and capitalism and portraying the military as an instrument of oppression.
The national office for consumer protection in Chile, SERNAC, informed the public earlier this month that it had recovered from a ransomware attack and was once more accepting consumer complaints.