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Oyster Bay town shuts down email, computers after technical problems, officials say

Oyster Bay Town Hall.

Oyster Bay Town Hall. Credit: Anthony Lanzilote

The town of Oyster Bay has shut down computer systems and email as it investigates "technical difficulties" in its information technology network, a town spokesman said.

"The system was shut down as a precaution, however, it currently appears to be limited to email," spokesman Brian Nevin wrote in a text Wednesday. Nevin said the town has not lost any emails and its data is backed up.

The town’s email system has been down since at least Monday, causing emails to town officials to bounce back as undeliverable. The town expects the email system to be fully restored by Saturday, Nevin said.

Nevin said town employees and an outside contractor haven’t determined the cause.

But the town has not received a demand for money, as happens in ransomware attacks when hackers encrypt victims’ data and only restore it after they’ve been paid.

"They’re still trying to identify the issue," Nevin said in an interview Wednesday.

The tax receiver’s computers have been brought back up, he said.

"We’re bringing critical functions back first," he said.

Nevin did not respond to questions about when the problems began or if the town had run virus detection software.

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