The University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine was attacked by Netwalker ransomware and paid hackers $1.14 million to regain access their data.
Per school officials, the incident didn’t affect patient care, the overall campus network or COVID-19 work, but the encrypted data was important enough to some of the academic work to make the decision to pay the hackers. Fortunately, a school representative was able to negotiate the payment down from the initial $3 million.
Cybersecurity experts report that these types of negotiations are currently occurring all over the world although not encouraged by law enforcement agencies.
In April, a ransomware attack shut down the servers of Illinois Valley Community College and in May, the Netwalker ransomware gang attacked Michigan State University.
Hackers are increasingly targeting university students and staff members through phishing emails during the coronavirus outbreak.