Cyberattack affects OMV

A cyberattack on Louisiana agencies last week was the reason the Office of Motor Vehicles location in DeQuincy was closed. The State of Louisiana implemented security precautions on Monday, Nov. 18. after a ransomware attack on Louisiana government servers. Officials say the state did not lose any data, nor did it pay a ransom. Most state systems are now back online.

Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a State of Emergency on Friday, Nov. 22, allowing several agencies to take actions, including waiving fees and fines, to assist members of the public.

The emergency declaration specifically allows the heads of the Office of Motor Vehicles, Department of Transportation and Development and the Department of Revenue to take certain actions that will assist members of the public affected by the service interruption related to Monday’s cybersecurity incident.

This suspension includes statutes that would penalize people who were unable to renew their driver’s licenses during the closure.

“This was a criminal act,” said Neal Underwood, deputy chief information officer with the Division of Administration. “This was not some malcontent teenager in their parent’s basement.”

Louisiana State Police and several federal agencies are investigating this attempted ransomware attack.