Hackney Council hit by ‘serious cyberattack’

Written by Sam Trendall on 14 October 2020 in News
News

London borough warns that services may be impacted 

Credit: Sunil Prasannan/CC BY-SA 3.0

Hackney Council has warned that a “serious cyberattack” may impact citizen services. 
 
The mayor of east London borough, Philip Glanville, issued a statement on Tuesday announcing that the authority had been the target of an attack that “which is affecting many of our services and IT systems”. 
 
No detail has yet been provided on the source and nature of the attack, nor is there any indication of how much damage may have been caused to systems, or whether any data might have been compromised. 


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“Council officers have been working closely with the National Cyber Security Centre, external experts and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to investigate and understand the impact of the incident,” Glanville said. “This investigation is at an early stage, and limited information is currently available. We will continue to provide updates as our investigation progresses. Our focus is on continuing to deliver essential frontline services, especially to our most vulnerable residents, and protecting data, while restoring affected services as soon as possible.”  

As of Tuesday afternoon, the homepage of the council’s website advised visitors that “due to technical difficulties, you may experience difficulty accessing online services”.  
 
This includes making payments, and accessing the authority’s OneAccount platform through which citizens can access a range of services. 
 
“Some council services may be unavailable or slower than normal, and our call centre is extremely busy,” the mayor added. “We ask that residents and businesses only contact us if absolutely necessary, and to bear with us while we seek to resolve these issues.” 
 
Hackney is widely recognised as one of the UK’s most digitally-savvy authorities, and has embraced the use of technology and data to deliver services. It uses the Digital Outcomes and Specialists far more than any other authority in the UK, posting about one contract notice a month seeking help with developing digital services. 

 

 

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Sam Trendall is editor of PublicTechnology

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