Speed, red-light cameras hit in cyber attack

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About 50 Victorian speed and red-light cameras have reportedly been hit by a ransomware attack, but police say the cameras have not been compromised.

Radio station 3AW reported the WannaCry virus has hit the private camera operator RedFlex, which operates most cameras in the state.

A virus has been detected, but police say speed cameras haven't been compromised. A virus has been detected, but police say speed cameras haven’t been compromised. Photo: Adam McLean

Redflex declined to comment, while a spokeswoman for the Road Safety Camera Commissioner said they had not received official notification of an attack.

Victoria Police said a virus had been detected and authorities were in discussions with RedFlex.

“Our advice at this stage is that a software virus has been detected however the camera system has not been compromised,” police said in a statement.

“We will look into all incidents detected by the speed and red light cameras during the time in question as a matter of course. The integrity of the camera system has not been affected.

It comes after the “WannaCry” ransomware attack in May – believed to be the world’s biggest online extortion attempt – struck more than 100,000 organisations in 150 countries, including British hospitals, German rail operators and Chinese universities.

A number have incidents have since been confirmed in Australia. 

Britain’s National Health Service had to turn away patients after WannaCry locked up hospital computers, forcing the closure of wards and emergency rooms. 

WannaCry is believed to have emerged from North Korea.

Typically ransomware spreads by people unwittingly opening emails, clicking on unsafe links or opening attached documents infected with a malware.

But the WannaCry developers have taken advantage of an old Windows exploit (a hole in the code) that meant they could remotely access computers and install their encryptor allowing the virus to attack networks across the world.

The Department of Justice and Regulation has been contacted for comment.

More to come.