Internet and Wi-Fi services have been restored at the Contra Costa County Library’s 26 branches after a mysterious outage struck the entire system again a few days ago, the library announced in a news release Saturday.
The latest outage occurred nearly two months after the county’s library system was hit with a randomware attack on Jan. 3 that disabled its online network for weeks.
In Saturday’s news release, the library notes that patrons can now place holds online and check their account status. They also can access museum passes, the streaming service Kanopy and Overdrive (Libby) for eBook and eAudiobook checkouts.
The service outage occurred while work was being done to secure the network after it had been disabled by the Jan. 3 attack, according to the news release. The county Department of Information Technology is leading the active investigation in coordination with state and federal investigators.
The news release states that county and library IT staff as well as industry experts are upgrading security software and modernizing the library’s technology infrastructure.
“The work that is underway will do much more than just restore services; it will strengthen the network,” county IT chief information officer Marc Shorr said in the release. “These changes and upgrades will improve the reliability and security of the network and help to prevent future impact to services.”
Some library services such as Link+ and the other online resources and databases will take a little longer to come back online, according to the release.
“As we reported in January, the library has no evidence that any personal patron data has been compromised,” the release states. “The server that stores patron data related to library card accounts and transactions was not affected.”
While the library collects names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and birth dates, it does not collect Social Security Administration numbers or store credit-card payment information, according to a statement released by the library system in January. The statement also noted the libraries stopped collecting driver’s license information last year and removed all of it from customer records.
“We know this recovery has been frustrating,” County Librarian Melinda Cervantes said. “We appreciate how understanding everyone has been and want to reassure library users that we have made restoring services to the public the first priority.”
The Contra Costa County Library will continue to update ccclib.org as additional services are restored. For questions about impacted library services, patrons can contact library administration at 925-608-7700 during regular business hours.
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