The Toronto Public Library (TPL) has been hit by a ransomware attack, the library confirmed. The attack began on Saturday, October 28, and has caused significant disruptions to the library’s IT systems.
Library branches remain open, and visitors can still borrow and return books, but the processing and tracking of materials is being done on paper rather than by computer. Access to online services such as TPL Kids, Canadiana Online, and others is also limited.
TPL spokesperson Ana-Maria Critchley said that the library is working with third-party cybersecurity experts and law enforcement to resolve the situation. She also said that there is no evidence at this time that the personal information of staff or customers has been compromised.
The ransomware attack on the TPL is one of a number of recent cyberattacks targeting Canadian organizations. In recent weeks, a number of Indigenous organizations, the Canadian Psychological Association, and an Alberta-based provider of insurance and healthcare benefits to construction unions have all been hit by ransomware attacks.
A new report from Sophos also found that the retail sector is increasingly vulnerable to ransomware attacks. The report found that only 26 per cent of retail organizations were able to disrupt a ransomware attack before their data was encrypted. The report also found that the median recovery costs for retail organizations that paid the ransom were four times higher than the recovery costs for those that used backups to recover their data.
The sources for this piece include an article in ITWorldCanada.