VIGO COUNTY, Ind. (WTHI)-- Late Tuesday morning, a malware (virus) program attacked the Vigo County Government Center Computer Systems. The cause is still unknown.
Cyber Criminology instructor at Indiana State University William Mackey specializes in this area.
He said it could have been any of three types of malware: A detrimental type that could have erased data in the government system, a Ransom-ware holding the information in the system "hostage", or a type of backdoor malware used for future channels of attacking the system.
His research on this subject states that 80% of these cases since 2005 have been caused by some sort of "human behavioral component".
"The biggest thing here is that most of this happens because of non-malicious activity on the part of the employee," Mackey said. He suspects that is the case in this situation.
"It would be very commonplace if this were a matter of phishing," Mackey continued, "An email sent to look like something else but really what it did was download some malware."
Mackey believes that employee training on how to handle and avoid malware needs to be a point of emphasis to prevent future malware problems. His research also shows that there are no current standards for what good anti-phishing employee training looks like.
"We need to get them [employees] informed and we need some sort of effective, evidence-based training," Mackey stated.
For now, he has this piece of advice. "The number one thing is don't click on links that you don't know what they are."
It's important to note that this is Professor Mackey's theory and details on the cause of this malware attack have not been released at this time.