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Baltimore Ransomware Attack | City Inches Closer To Normal Operation

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- The City of Baltimore is inching closer to getting back online.

Those spearheading the recovery efforts say that most city employees should have computer access restored by the end of the week.

Despite the recovery efforts, Baltimore residents will still feel the aftershocks of the ransomware attack for months.

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Hackers have held a tight grip on Baltimore's computer systems for 36 days as cyber experts try to bring the city back online.

As of Wednesday, 70 percent of city employee email accounts are active again. By the end of the week, the goal is to have 95 percent of employees with full access.

Some billing systems, however, are still in a spiral.

"I do not expect June bills to go out," Deputy Chief of Staff Sheryl Goldstein said.

Goldstein says Baltimore residents should not expect to get a water bill for the month of June. A backlog of charges will show up in the mail eventually.

"I think there will be a number of issues that we need to address, and we'll have a plan in place before we mail out the bills," Goldstein said.

Before the first round of post-ransomware, attack bills go out to customers. Goldstein says that the city will likely audit the bills and staff the phones to take questions and develop payment plans.

The continuing fallout from the attack is now dragging into the sixth week.

"I don't believe this is going to get resolved anytime soon," Cybersecurity Expert Jeff Bathurst said. "It's going to be an arduous, lengthy process."

The city has put more than $18 million into the attack. The hackers originally demanded $76,000.

Mayor Young said that paying ransom is not an option.

Residents can now look up parking tickets in person or online and property tax bills will go out on time.

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