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Fremont County offices closed a second day due to cyber attack

Fremont County Closed Medium.jpeg
Posted at 10:42 PM, Aug 20, 2022

CAÑON CITY, Colorado — Fremont County Offices were closed for the second day in a row Thursday following reports of a cyber security breach.

The County Clerk and Recorder, Treasurer, Assessor, and Department of Public Health were all closed frustrating many residents who need to do business with the county.

"I came here to register one of my I just recently purchased and I'm unable to do so," said Jade Behrndt.

He owns a tree service company and was hoping to get the truck ready to go for his business.

"So, it's going to set me back about a week considering they're not open on Friday," Behrndt said.

Jim Waltman was also headed to the DMV to register a vehicle Thursday afternoon.

"It's sad to see that they could be taken by some ransomware, I'm here in this (community,) here in Canon City, in Fremont County," he said.

Sheriff Allen Cooper told News 5 that the county jail remains in operation. Deputies will continue to go on patrols and investigate crimes. Sheriff's office staff currently cannot access their email. Cooper said that they are working with the 11th Judicial District to make sure that prosecutors and defense attorneys have timely access to criminal evidence.

The Fremont County Courthouse remains open. The court system uses a separate computer system from the rest of the county. And while some computers at the Department of Human Services were impacted by the breach, the office is still assisting clients with benefits.

Fremont County is not the only Colorado community to be targeted by cybercriminals this summer. The Gunnison County Treasurer was hit by a $1 million cyber fraud scheme that was reported earlier this month. The town of Frederick, Colorado also fell victim to a ransomware attack in late July.

The Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management is helping county officials to respond to the cyber breach. The state is working to provide a spokesperson who can provide more detailed information about the breach to local news media.

A spokesperson for the FBI's Colorado Field Office in Denver could neither confirm nor deny that agents are assisting with the investigation. However, the bureau wants the public to know that they take cyber intrusions seriously. They also work routinely alongside state, federal, and local partners to identify, pursue and defeat cyber criminals.
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