Department of Justice hit with ransomware attack

The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development in South Africa says it has suffered a ransomware attack which has also affected its website.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the department said the attack happened on the evening of 6 September and has led to all its information systems being encrypted and unavailable to both internal employees as well as members of the public.

All electronic services provided by the Department including issuing of letters of authority, bail services, email, and the departmental website are affected.

“Our IT teams are working tirelessly to restore services as soon as is practically possible,” the department said in a statement.

“Child Maintenance payments for month-end have already been processed and will therefore not be impacted by the current system outage.”

Manual recording equipment will be used to ensure that court proceedings continue as scheduled.

The Office of the Chief Master is currently using a manual process to provide bereaved families with the necessary documentation that they need to bury their loved ones.

“The Department’s IT experts are working together with state agencies to investigate and resolve the problem. So far no indication of data compromise has been detected,” the statement said.

“The Department apologises for any inconvenience this may cause to the public.”

This ransomware attack occurred almost exactly a year after the DoppelPaymer ransomware gang claimed credit for a hack on the online systems of the Office of the Chief Justice.

MyBroadband asked the department and the State IT Agency (SITA) for comment on the website outage.

The Department of Justice and Constitutional Services did not respond by the time of publication.

A spokesperson for SITA said that it does not provide website services to the department.


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Department of Justice hit with ransomware attack