University of Calgary, Canada, had to pay a $20,000 ransom to cyber criminals in order to release their computer systems’ files, after getting infected with malware.
About a month ago, the university was hit by ransomware, which installed itself on the machines, scrambled documents and demanded cash to recover the data.
Apparently, the university weren’t running decent backup procedures, thus the administrators have agreed to pay up the ransom in Bitcoins.
“As part of efforts to maintain all options to address these systems issues, the university has paid a ransom totaling about $20,000 CDN that was demanded as part of this ‘ransomware’ attack,” the VP of finance and services Linda Dalgetty stated. “The university is now in the process of assessing and evaluating the decryption keys. The actual process of decryption is time-consuming and must be performed with care. It is important to note that decryption keys do not automatically restore all systems or guarantee the recovery of all data. A great deal of work is still required by IT to ensure all affected systems are operational again, and this process will take time.”
During the malware attack, about 100 systems were locked up. Yesterday, the students and the staff got their email service back, however, it was not on the original university system.
According to Dalgetty, the police had been called in and they were investigating the attack. In addition, she said that under the circumstances, it would not be appropriate to comment further on the details of the infection.