University of California pays crypto ransom worth $1 million for hacked data

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A recent report has informed that the University of California at San Francisco has been forced to pay a crypto ransom worth over a million US dollars. This follows the incident that happened early in June, where hackers encrypted the school’s essential data.

The University of California pays a crypto ransom to regain access to locked data

Most precisely, the CBS San Francisco reported on Sunday that the University’s School of Medicine paid out a crypto ransom worth $1.14 million to a group of hackers. The decision was made to recover the school’s research works, which were locked by hackers.

One of the school’s IT staff discovered the ransomware incident on the first day of June. The unnamed person mentioned that isolated the affected areas, which was “a limited number of servers in the School,” from the University’s core network. This made it difficult for the school’s researchers to access the data.

Over $1 million in crypto ransom

More so, the ransomware had encrypted the available data on these affected servers, which served as evidence that the network had been manipulated. Owing to the importance of the data encrypted, UCSF opted to pay the crypto ransom worth over $1 million to the attackers to enable the researcher to gain back access to their works.

The University noted in a release:

The data that was encrypted is important to some of the academic work we pursue as a university serving the public good. We therefore made the difficult decision to pay some portion of the ransom, approximately $1.14 million, to the individuals behind the malware attack in exchange for a tool to unlock the encrypted data and the return of the data they obtained.

Not all the school’s works were locked out, particularly their COVID-19 research work, and the patient care project was not affected by the incident. However, the University did mention in the report that it is collaborating with cyber-security experts for investigation. Also, they will be working with experts to enhance their system defense.

They encrypted servers are expected to be recovered soon.

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