A hacker has taken over the computer system of the southern Spanish city of Jerez de la Frontera.
The hacker is demanding a ransom paid in bitcoin to unlock it, local officials said Friday.
The hack, which has caused outages of services offered through the city’s website, began on Tuesday night, a municipal spokesman stated
The hacker behind the hack demands payment in bitcoin to restore the computer system, he added, without saying how much the ransom is.
Bitcoin has long been a favourite ransom tender for hackers thanks to the currencies’ anonymous nature.
Spain’s interior ministry has sent three computer experts to Jerez de la Frontera, a city with a population in the region of some 212,000 residents.
Mayor, Mamem Sanchez, said the municipal website would only be back up and running when it is “100 percent secure”.
While Police and security experts say it is unwise to pay hackers, many operations end up paying ransom demands as often it cost less than rebuilding complete fresh computer systems.