Costa Rica: What Happens When an Attack Shuts Down a Country?

Withoutfurtherradu Security Communication Specialist BD Staff
edited June 2022 in News & Blogs

For the last few months, the country has been virtually paralyzed by a bloody ongoing cyberwar with the Russia-affiliated Conti ransomware gang, which in mid-April managed to infiltrate 27 government agencies at various levels in the state hierarchy. Among the worst-hit institutions were the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Labor and Social Security, and the Ministry of Science.

As a result, Costa Rica’s treasury department warned civil servants that they would not be paid on time and would have to apply by email, on paper, or by hand to receive their salaries. Moreover, the attack severely crippled the country’s foreign trade by disrupting its customs and tax platforms and forcing the country’s president to declare a state of emergency.

But the drama didn't end after the first attack. Just weeks after the Conti group threatened to overthrow the government if it doesn’t receive a $20 million ransom, Costa Rica was targeted by another well-known Russian ransomware group called Hive.