Anonymous hackers have brought the US city of Baltimore to its knees by seizing control of government computers, demanding bitcoin in return for releasing their hold over the systems.
The city’s mayor, Bernard Young, is refusing to pay the ransom and consequently, officials are unable to process administrative functions.
The ransomware attack was discovered on May 7, with the city taking down online systems and services to contain it. The hackers demanded 13 bitcoins — worth around €89,660 — to remove the file-locking virus.
Young warned that it could take months for normal service to be resumed.
A similar cyber-attack hit Atlanta last year, according to NBC, costing millions to recover damage, while Greenville in North Carolina was targetted in April.
As many as 25 local governments have been attacked by hackers this year, the media added, citing analysts.