Some hackers have managed to infect the systems of a Canadian university with their ransomware and they are now demanding 39 Bitcoin (which is about $28,500) to unlock the files.
The Carleton University has already confirmed the attack. They asked the students to turn off their computers until the issue is resolved, thus advising everyone to avoid connecting to the university wireless network for the time being.
In an update a few hours ago, the University said the following “Carleton University is open, classes are continuing and all employees are expected at work. Business operations at the university are continuing. Progress continues to be made on the network interruption issues.”
The slightly relieving thing is that the university has a back-up for their data. The IT department is working hard to get the data back.
Earlier today in an update they made it clear that no personal information has been accessed by the attackers, so students and staff are all secure. The only target of the attackers is to deploy the malware ], encrypt the data and demand for the ransom.
“Access to email has returned and is functioning. Repairs to enterprise systems are progressing. With the return of email, all future updates will be emailed to faculty and staff. If users are able to use their computer to conduct business, they are encouraged to do so. If they cannot, they are asked to refrain from turning their computers on and encouraged to call CCS Service Desk,” the university added.
At this point, no other details are known about the ransomware infection or the hacker or hackers who managed to break into the university’s systems.
By the looks of things, the university has no intention to pay the attackers to remove the infection, but restoring the backups could take a little longer. Students are strongly recommended to paying attackers, as the IT department warns that popups could show up on more computers connected to the local Wi-Fi network.