In a statement Tyler Technologies said, its network was hacked by a ransomware, a kind of computer virus through which hackers encrypts files and decrypt them once their payment demands are met.
The hacker was able to gain access to its internal networks, but could not access to the systems it hosts for clients; incidentally, the software it sells that displays election results, is hosted by Amazon and the hacker could not gain access to it.
“We have confirmed that the malicious software the intruder used was ransomware. Because this is an active investigation, we will not provide any additional specifics relating to our incident response or our investigation at this time,” said the company, based in Plano, Texas.
“All indications are that the impact of this incident is limited to our internal corporate network and phone systems, and that there has been no impact on software we host for our clients. Our hosted environment is separate and segregated from our internal corporate environment.”
The company has notified law enforcement agencies and has brought in security specialists.
The computer security incident was a matter of concern to local officials since some of the company’s software are used to display election results. U.S. intelligence agencies have warned of foreign governments trying to influence the 2020 November 3 U.S. Presidential elections and sow mistrust by altering sites that report votes, a task that is relatively easier than the alternative to change the outcome of the elections.
Tyler’s clients are also worried that the hacker could potentially use Tyler’s administrative access to breach local versions of its software including those used by emergency responders.
Neither Tyler, the FBI or the Department of Homeland Security responded to requests for comments.