Years of Police Dashcam Video Lost in Atlanta Ransomware Incident
The Atlanta Police Department has lost years worth of police car dashcam videos following the March ransomware attack that affected most of the city’s IT infrastructure. Chief Shields said footage from body-worn cameras was not compromised in the cyber-attack that crippled Atlanta city IT systems for almost two months, but only videos recorded by police car dashcams. The normal train of thought is that the loss of the dashcam data could affect some DUI investigations, but Chief Shields downplayed the importance of the dashcam footage in pursuing DUI charges.
Nonetheless, cases could still be affected if the defendant’s lawyer finds questionable details in the officer testimony that under normal circumstances would have been corroborated by audio and video evidence. Cases investigating violent acts or road crashes are also up in the air. Nevertheless, the Atlanta Police Department can count itself lucky.
Chief Shields said that in the immediate aftermath of the ransomware incident, the department had limited access to investigative files that were stored on its server. The files and access to the server were later restored, and the evidence is now safe.