SYRACUSE, N.Y. — More than 430 crime cameras line the city streets in Syracuse, and last month, police now say some stopped working after the Syracuse City School District's computer files and systems were hacked.
"When their network was compromised, our cameras that were hooked into the schools, and it wasn't every one of them, we're not all hooked in the schools, but the ones that were hooked into the schools went down," explained First Deputy Chief Joseph Cecile.
It's called ransomware, and while we're not sure how much the district paid to get access back, Dep. Chief Cecile says detectives missed out on surveillance video of two "major incidents" during the hack.
They ended up solving both and Cecile says the cases are still open, so he can't comment on what they are.
"We will always be able to fall back on the old ways of solving these crimes if we don't have this because you cannot, no matter how good your system is you cannot rely on technology 100% of the time."
On Wednesday Cecile asked the Syracuse Common Council to consider approving a $50,000 grant to change their network.
"If we have those fiber optics in the firehouses and are able to get all our camera networks going into those firehouses, it would limit this happening again to some extent."
Cecile says it would work well with Syracuse firehouses, and the new network connection would be contained in the city.
He says the school district uses an outside network.
"We need to get it approved first from the Council so there's no sense in meeting with them, but after, it's approved and voted on Monday then we'll certainly be meeting with Chief Monds to make sure he's okay with it."
Deputy Chief Cecile says all homicides from 2018 and on have been solved in part or even in full by these cameras.