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City’s Utility Payment Processor Experienced Ransom Attack Could your information have been exposed?

The City of Auburn issued an alert Friday afternoon that the company used for utility payment processing experienced a security incident. The incident, according to the city’s announcement, occurred in early February and happened over a matter of hours.

The utility billing payment processor, Automatic Funds Transfer Services, Inc. (AFTS) is limited to only data necessary to “fulfill utility billing and payment processing of paper check payments,” states the announcement. Potential customer information that may have been exposed includes utility bill account number, name, address, and billing amounts. Scanned copies of checks mailed in by business and residential customers are also stored on the AFTS servers. These scanned copies “include bank account and routing information. It is unknown at this time if these scanned copies were accessed,” explains the announcement.

City of Auburn Public Information Officer Kalyn Brady confirmed the attack was not on the city of Auburn’s servers, nor was it connected to the city’s website outage earlier this week.

According to the city’s announcement, the effected database does not contain sensitive information such as social security numbers, birth dates, driver’s license numbers, state ID numbers, or any other Personally Identifiable Information (PII). Credit card information for resident or commercial business is also not maintained on the breached server.

Brady explained that the city will not assume customers who typically pay their bill through the online payment portal did not send in a paper check in February. With this in mind, all Auburn utility customers will receive a flyer alerting them to the AFTS server breach and possible exposure.

All utility customers who pay their utility bill with a paper check to monitor their bank accounts and immediately report any suspicious activity to their banking institution.

Brady confirmed the city is continuing to follow up with the processor for additional details.


Sources:
To write this story the Auburn Examiner spoke with City of Auburn PIO Kalyn Brady and referenced the public announce.

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