Steamship Authority did not make ransom payment

Boston Statehouse
steamship authority ferry_459877

Steamship Authority Ferry. WWLP file image

BOSTON (SHNS) – Calling it a “criminal act,” the Woods Hole, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket Steamship Authority said Tuesday that it did not pay a ransom in connection with the June 2 cyber event that rocked its operations at the outset of the summer tourist season.

“This incident was a criminal act, and we continue to work with law enforcement as part of the ongoing investigation,” Steamship Authority General Manager Robert Davis said Monday in the authority’s latest statement on the incident. “Although that investigation is ongoing, we do want to [sic] our customers and the public to know that the Steamship Authority did not pay a ransom or engage with the cybercriminals. We continue to refer all inquiries related to the details of this ongoing investigation to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

Davis said the authority initiated response protocols on the day of the incident, notified law enforcement, and was able to avoid any trip cancelations while honoring its existing customer reservations. And the safety of authority vessels was not affected, he said.

“At this time, most of our key customer functions have been fully and safely restored,” he said. “Reservations can be made or changed on our website, via phone or at a terminal and credit cards may now be used at all locations.”

Citing the “hacking incident” at the Steamship Authority and an “alarming increase” in ransomware attacks, Attorney General Maura Healey on June 8 urged the business community and government entities to immediately assess their data security practices and take necessary steps to upgrade security measures.

Healey also brought attention to a memo from the Biden administration concerning the threat ransomware poses and suggestions to mitigate its impact.

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