ransomware

Pearson K-12 Technology/flickr

Viewers hoping to watch the Monroe County School Board meeting online Tuesday — or who tried to get through to the school district by phone — were out of luck.

The district shut its entire computer system down after detecting a malicious software attack over the weekend.

Atlanta city officials are not saying whether they were strong-armed into paying the $51,000 ransom to hackers holding many of the municipality's online services hostage, but they did announce progress in restoring networks on Thursday.

Police officers are once again able to file reports electronically and some investigative databases thought to have been corrupted by the ransomware attack have turned out to be unscathed, the city says. The city's 311 system — which deals with things such as trash pickup and reporting of potholes — is also back in operation.

The ransomware attack on worldwide computer networks earlier this month largely spared those of the federal government. While the government dodged a bullet this time, experts say, its systems are still vulnerable — although perhaps less so than in the past.

When the global malware attack — dubbed "WannaCry" — was first detected, a government cybersecurity response group moved quickly.