The company, however, says it expects the vehicle emissions program to recover by April 30.
“The Applus team is making good progress in Connecticut and expects to have full service restored no later than April 30th. The vehicle emissions software used by Connecticut stations is complex and different from that used in the other states and counties Applus serves. If we can confidently resume testing sooner in Connecticut, we will,” it says in a statement published this week.
The Connecticut Vehicle Emissions Program has already announced that free retests would still be offered when the system is back online, no late fee would be implemented, and new registration would be allowed to complete without emission testing.
“The DMV has made temporary provisions to allow new registrations for vehicles without the required vehicle emissions test. Please note that once the system is restored, your vehicle will be required to meet Connecticut's emissions compliance standards. The DMV implemented a workaround that allows motorists to renew their vehicle registrations either by mail or online; the emissions compliance will be verified after the system is restored,” the local authorities explain.
Applus hasn’t provided any information regarding the kind of cyberattack that hit its computers, but given it took so long to recover, there’s a chance ransomware blocked access to its devices.
Ransomware is a type of malware that locks computers and encrypts files until a ransom is paid to the malware authors. System administrators can restore access to infected devices by restoring backups, which obviously takes time and involves hours of work on the server side to make sure the malware is blocked from encrypting files again.