Nabers for ICMA: Ransomware Attacks Illustrate the Vulnerabilities that Local Government Entities Face

The media has focused on cyberattacks related to election systems lately.  Many individuals, public officials, and company executives, however, have been just as worried about ransomware attacks.

Ransomware attacks infect computer networks with a virus that totally shuts down a computer or a network.  It prevents access and demands payment to release and restore data on the machine or network. Recent examples of ransomware attacks illustrate the vulnerabilities that government entities face. The ransom costs are exorbitant while the risk of either a loss of data or a service outage is terrifying.

Congress may be smiling on rural America!

Government officials in rural America are more “anxious” than “eager” to hear details of the long-awaited $1 trillion Trump infrastructure plan. There’s no way to know how much, if any, will actually trickle down to small and rural areas.  Spokespersons for the administration say rural America will not be overlooked but there is still angst […]

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Who owns our infrastructure? Who will fix it?

Who owns the public infrastructure assets in the U.S.?  If your answer was – the federal government – you would be wrong. There’s lots of talk about infrastructure today and both parties in Congress are advocating for the funding, incentives and support that will be required to repair and expand the nation’s crumbling infrastructure.  But, […]

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Asset recycling – a concept that taxpayers need to understand!

While the $1 trillion Trump Infrastructure Plan was being touted last week by the president and transportation officials, those of us at the annual meeting for the Association for the Improvement of American Infrastructure (AIAI) in New York were giving considerable attention to one particular aspect of that plan – “asset recycling.” Often misstated, misinterpreted […]

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Move over, Smart Cities…you’ve got company!!

Snohomish County in the state of Washington is about to be the second county in the United States to become designated a Smart County. Durham County, in North Carolina, was the first. Municipal leaders cornered the market on being recognized as they launched initiatives to combine data, communication and information technology for the benefit of […]

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Interested in rail projects? If so, here’s something of immediate interest!

An abundance of rail safety projects are about to be launched. That’s because commuter and intercity passenger railroads must meet a federally mandated December 2018 deadline to implement Positive Train Control (PTC) systems. And, it’s also because the federal government just awarded millions to help transit agencies throughout the U.S. meet that deadline. Additionally, cybersecurity […]

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Budget woes create even greater need for transportation collaboration

Hand-wringing and soul-searching are an integral part of budget decisions being made by government officials. Across the U.S., 31 states faced budget shortfalls at the beginning of 2017.  Legislators in Texas last weekend sent a budget bill to the governor that includes a $1 billion withdrawal from the rainy day fund and an accounting scheme […]

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