News and Updates on Information Technology

United States – University of Utah

Exploit: Ransomware
University of Utah: Institution of Higher Learning 

Risk to Small Business: 2.077 = Severe

Netwalker ransomware appears to be the culprit in a data breach at the University of Utah. The school reportedly paid a ransomware gang $457,059 in order to avoid having student information released online. The hack occurred on July 19, and the cybercriminals gained access to the network of the university’s College of Social and Behavioral Science [CSBS].

Individual Risk: 2.224 = Severe

Even when a ransom is paid, there’s never proof that the gang really did destroy the stolen data, instead of copying it or selling it. Students should be aware of this data being used in spear phishing attempts.

Customers Impacted: Unknown

How it Could Affect Your Customers’ Business: Ransomware is a persistent and pernicious threat to any business. Paying the criminals doesn’t guarantee the safety of stolen data – but blocking the initial attack does.