The IT systems of the city hall of Marseille and the metropolitan area have not yet been restored. (illustration) - P. Huguen / AFP

  • The sites of the town hall of Marseille and the metropolis are not fully restored, three days after a "massive cyber attack." "
  • Its origin remains unknown. An investigation was opened by the Paris prosecutor's office.

Do you want to check on the Marseille town hall website which public services remain accessible during this confinement period? Would you like to report a bulky item on the metropolitan portal? This Tuesday morning, three days after an unprecedented computer attack, it is still impossible. "The damage is quite heavy, confides a source to the metropolis. Applications for the general public no longer work, infrastructures such as accounting software are also affected ... This attack is unprecedented in its scale, it is really massive. "

It hit, on Saturday, the sites of the town hall of Marseille, the metropolis and the town of Martigues. Its authors have not yet been identified: an investigation has been opened by the Paris prosecutor's office, we learned on Tuesday from a judicial source. It was entrusted to the Central Office for combating crime linked to information and communication technologies (OCLCTIC).

Violent attack

"We still do not know where it comes from," they say at the Marseille town hall, where employees still had no access to landlines or computers on Tuesday morning. "We are trying to set up working methods to continue working at all costs", says an employee, who for example created a temporary email address on Gmail.

One of the Marseille city hall sites, still out of order on Tuesday. - Screenshot

"The fact that services have still not been restored proves that the attack was violent," points out Nacira Salvan, president of the Women's Circle of Cybersecurity (Cefcys). For this expert, “this period of crisis, with the coronavirus, is a favorable playing field for hackers, who know how to take advantage of any difficult situation. "

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She noted that "some groups in Korea, Russia and China are hyperactive right now. "But the attack that affected the town hall of Marseille, the metropolis and the city of Martigues could also have been launched by French hackers:" The day before municipal elections, we can also imagine a French group with political motivations ", concludes the expert.

"The worst is before us"

His colleague Fabrice Epelboin, a teacher at Sciences-Po, a specialist in cybersecurity, also considers that it is complicated to determine who is behind this attack:

The ransomware (malware that takes data hostage to demand ransom) is the AK-47, a weapon used by both the local thug and the Russian army! There is nothing more banal as an attack, it does not bode well for its origin. "

Nacira Salvan believes that these attacks will multiply: “Many other organizations will be affected in the same way because teleworking opens up additional vulnerabilities. The worst is before us! "


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  • Society
  • Marseille
  • Elections
  • Cyber ​​attack
  • Hacker