San Antonio car dealership feeling impact of computer hack affecting industry

Computer system known as CDK hit by Ransomware

SAN ANTONIOUPDATE (6/23/2024): CDK released the following statement regarding the status of their computer systems after being hit by ransomware:

“CDK experienced a cyber incident on June 19th. We promptly launched an investigation with leading third-party experts and notified law enforcement.  We have begun the restoration process. Based on the information we have at this time, we anticipate that the process will take several days to complete, and in the interim we are continuing to actively engage with our customers and provide them with alternate ways to conduct business.”

ORIGINAL STORY: At least one San Antonio car dealership is feeling the impact of a computer hack that has been affecting a large portion of that industry.

Specifically, a computer system by an Illinois-based company, CDK Global, was hit by ransomware earlier this week.

As a precaution, that company reportedly shut down the system, which it says is used by more than 15,000 auto dealerships across the country.

“CDK makes it really easy for dealers to do business in a short amount of time,” said April Ancira, vice president of the Ancira Auto Group. “So it’s beneficial to the customer, as well.”

Ancira said her dealerships have been working without the all-inclusive computer system since Wednesday.

Dealers throughout the industry used the system to manage everything from car sales to service to keeping track of inventory.

Without it, her employees have had to “go old school a little bit,” relying on some of their former techniques and technology to get by, Ancira said.

Workers in the service department at Ancira have had to rely on older computer programs and handwritten notes to get the job done. (KSAT 12 News)

“We’re actually able to get some of the information from little bits of different software,” she said. “We’re doing some of that. We’re doing some handwriting.”

Ancira said as a result some of the processes are going a bit slower than normal. She said customers, thankfully, have been patient.

KSAT 12 News also called several other major dealerships in the city. None of them responded to the phone calls.

Some of the smaller car dealers said they do not use the CDK computer system.

Other dealerships across the country, meanwhile, have shut down altogether due to the computer system outage.

“There was a moment of, ‘Ok, what’s at stake? What will we be able to do?,” Ancira said.

What does not appear to be at stake, she said, is any personal customer information. She said the ransomware targeted CDK as a company, aiming to stop it from doing business.

However, Ancira said ultimately, ordinary people are inconvenienced by it.

“When something like that happens, (it affects) the employees’ families and their ability to put food on the table,” she said. “Customers need their cars repaired that maybe need to go to dialysis or cancer treatment.”

About the Authors

Katrina Webber joined KSAT 12 in December 2009. She reports for Good Morning San Antonio. Katrina was born and raised in Queens, NY, but after living in Gulf Coast states for the past decade, she feels right at home in Texas. It's not unusual to find her singing karaoke or leading a song with her church choir when she's not on-air.

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