The Macon Water Authority

790 Second Street • Macon, GA 31202-0108 • (478) 464-5600

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Customer Service Coming Back Online

Nov 12, 2019 by Chris Wood, Ph.D.

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MWA Customer Service and Business Processes are coming back online, following a ransomware attack on Oct. 27.

The Macon Water Authority’s (MWA) Customer Care Services and Business Processes are ramping back up, as the utility makes progress returning its business support operations to normalcy following a ransomware attack on Oct. 27.

As for day-to-day business operations and customer service functions, the MWA now has its backup customer data in place and the majority of its servers back online to carry out core business processes, says Tony Rojas, MWA Executive Director and President. In addition, the Authority is beginning to apply previous cash and check payments to customer accounts, since the utility can now access that data and update account information.

Likewise, MWA customers are able to see their account information and make payments via the Authority’s website portal. The MWA has returned to being able to accept credit card payments as well, in addition to posting bank draft or automated payments from customers.

However, the MWA is still unable to read meters and bill customers. And initially, MWA customers will experience higher than normal wait times when calling the Authority, because of the increased call volume as systems come back online.

“I want to thank our customers for their continued patience and understanding during this event,” says Rojas. “I especially want to express thanks to our IT Department, Employees, and the consulting firms who are working diligently to restore our systems.”

MWA officials continue to reassure customers that the utility will not be applying late penalties, administrative fees, or any enforcements actions – such as disconnecting services or reporting delinquent accounts to credit bureaus – for the time when customers did not have access to the MWA customer service software to review their account information or make payment via the web portal.

Customers will be given ample time to pay their balances now that the MWA customer service software is back online, adds Rojas.

The MWA has found no evidence that its customers’ personal or financial information has been compromised. However, to confirm this initial opinion, the Authority is conducting a Breach Assessment with the help of cyber security consultants who have already started a forensic analysis. This examination also will provide the Authority with more insight on how the Ransomware Attack occurred.

If the MWA uncovers any evidence that customer data has been hacked, the Authority will notify customers immediately, says Rojas.

During the Ransomware Attack, the MWA continued to provide essential water and sewer services for its customers and did not experience any service interruptions.

MWA Customer Care phone lines remain open at 478-464-5600 during normal business hours, and at 478-464-5650 after hours; or, customers can contact the MWA via the customer service email address at customercare@maconwater.org.

Media Contacts:
Tony Rojas, Executive Director and President
P: 478-464-5622 OR 478-256-9332
E: tonyr@maconwater.org

Lisa Golphin, Sr. Executive of Strategic Planning
P: 478-464-5623 OR 478-227-1981
E: lgolphin@maconwater.org

Chris Wood, Ph.D.
P: 770-757-1681
E: chris@jwapr.com OR john.wood@gcsu.edu

Tagged: mwa, macon water authority, ransomware attack, mwa customer care, mwa customer service software, mwa selfservice customer web portal

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