A report by Armor has revealed since January 2019, ransomware has hit 49 US educational institutions.
Since January 2019, 49 educational institutions and/or school districts, have been identified by the cloud security solutions provider, as victims of ransomware attacks. These statistics makes the education sector the second most popular target by threat actors after municipalities.
Within just over a week in the middle of September, Armor identified nine school districts and one college which had been hit by ransomware.
Crowder College in Neosho, MO, reported being a victim of ransomware attack on September 11 with the ransom demand being $1.6 million. The college had found no evidence that the threat actors were in the systems since November 2018, additionally there has been no news of whether the college has paid the ransom.
Another college in New York was hit with a $2 million ransom in July. This was the first million dollar ransom seen for an educational institution. Connecticut is the state with the most number of compromised school district, with 7 ransomware attacks compromising 104 individual schools.
“Educational institutions, municipalities and other organizations whose infrastructure is critical to their communities host a variety of data, most of which is sensitive.” said Chris Hinkley, Head of Threat Resistance at Armor.
“Cybercriminals know these organizations can’t afford to shut down, they are often using out of date hardware and software, and they have few security measures in place. This is a deadly combination in the case of a ransomware attack, which provides for a high sense of urgency and a high probability of large payments.”
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