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Minneapolis Hit with DDoS Attack amid Social Unrest

A cyberattack temporarily disabled certain city systems and websites Thursday morning. The cyberattack comes amid protests over the police killing of George Floyd earlier this week.

ddos attack_shutterstock
The city of Minneapolis was the target of a cyberattack this week while protests fueled by the police killing of George Floyd were also underway.  

A distributed denial-of-service attack temporarily disabled a number of the city's websites and systems early Thursday morning, resulting in "some staff and residents' inability to access" them, said city CIO Fadi Fadhil. 

The cyberattack, which flooded the city's servers with enough traffic to crash them, did not have a lasting impact, according to Fadhil. 

By 9 a.m., a majority of systems were back up and running. The CIO expects to have "100 percent" of its systems back to normal by the end of day Friday. There is currently no evidence of a data breach or a loss of data, he added.  

"Although these types of attacks are not completely unavoidable, they are fairly common, and the city of Minneapolis has proactive measures in place to respond to and mitigate disruptions when they do occur," said Fadhil. "The city of Minneapolis IT continues to monitor its cyber platforms to ensure further disruption doesn't happen again.”

Fadhil did not comment on where the attack is believed to have originated, and it is unclear if there are outside law enforcement agencies investigating the attack at this time. 

The cyberattack took place as the city was responding to a number of crises inspired by the killing of George Floyd, a local bar bouncer who died while being taken into custody by Minneapolis police. Floyd's death has led to protests all over the country, as well as incidents of violence throughout Minnesota

Lucas Ropek is a former staff writer for Government Technology.