Ransomware virus affecting businesses in Texarkana

Protecting yourself from ransomware - Part 2
Protecting yourself from ransomware - Part 2
Updated: Dec. 11, 2020 at 6:25 PM CST
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TEXARKANA (KSLA) - Work continues by Texarkana officials in an effort to recognize a ransomware virus that has shut down internet service to computers in the twin cities.

The impact of the virus is causing one entity to make adjustments on the way business is conducted.

Steady lines form at the Texarkana Water Utilities office, where customers pay their bills in person. These lines are expected to continue for now as work to repair online service continues.

“I’ve paid online for years and years but the last week it won’t accept it. They say they can’t find my account number,” said customer Earl Pierce.

The problem began over the past week end when the IT department noticed a ransomware attacking the network serving TWU and the cities of Texarkana Arkansas and Texas. This caused the offices to shut down computer services, effecting the way water bills are paid and the amount of those bills.

“If you can, come in and pay what you normally pay at the water utilities. Right now we do not have a way to bill our customers, but the water bill is still due so you need to pay on your account to keep water going,” said TWU spokesperson Lisa Thompson.

Thompson says it is not known when the issue will be resolved.

“We’ve got a lot of people working hard to figure out what the problems are and get them fixed, but it is going to take time. So we really don’t have an estimation, but we are working hard.”

City leaders say the ransomware is not interrupting water service or water quality, nor having an adverse effect for fire or police services.

Related: Ransomware cripples municipal computers in Texarkana

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