FLORENCE, Ariz. - The Pinal County Attorney said it will likely be a week before his office recovers from a ransomware attack that shut down his office's case management system.
County Attorney Lando Voyles said the system was taken over by a virus called CryptoLocker. CryptoLocker is a type of ransomware that encrypts a computer's files and promises to unlock them if the victim pays a certain amount of money.
Voyles said he has no intention of paying.
So far, Voyles said the virus has destroyed 64,000 files, but he believes those files are all archived in a separate place. However, his employees are running the office on backup computers while the virus is cleaned off the existing systems.
'It's a disaster," Voyles said Wednesday. "Luckily this hasn't spread over to the courthouse."
Voyles said he hasn't involved any law enforcement agencies because he doesn't have evidence to turn over to them yet. But the FBI has investigated ransomware for years.
FBI Special Agent Martin Hellmer said the hackers behind CryptoLocker and other kinds of ransomware are making millions off of it.
"This sort of scam is completely indiscriminate," Hellmer said. "They will go after big businesses, small businesses and individuals."
Wednesday, Voyles said the damage appeared to be contained to a portion of the case management system used to fulfill public records requests.