US Marshals Service latest ransomware target

The ransomware plague continues to afflict major organisations, with the US Marshals Service (USMS) the latest target of cyber criminals.

The USMS is the oldest federal law enforcement agency in the United States and operates within the US Department of Justice. Its remit is wide, including hunting for fugitives, as well as administering the witness protection programme.

The USMS said it had experienced a ransomware security breach this month that compromised sensitive law enforcement information.

The Marshals Service notified the Department of Justice of the breach, with an investigation now underway.

According to a US Marshals spokesperson, the incident impacted a standalone computer system which contained records about targets of ongoing investigations, employee personal data and internal processes.

Importantly, according to the spokesperson, the system did not include personal details about people enrolled in the Federal Witness Protection Program, whose lives could be in danger if publicly exposed. 

The USMS service says the system is not connected to the broader network, and was quickly shut down when the breach was discovered before turning the investigation over to the Department of Justice.