Ransomware attacks are increasing rapidly these days. Hackers are continually using Ransomwares to remotely encrypt the data in the remote computers to force people to pay in order to get their data back.
Well, if you don’t know what Ransomware is, then I suggest you to read this article before proceeding.
Recently a Canadian University – University Of Calgary got hit by a Ransomware. And in order to restore access to their data, they paid $20,000 to its hackers.
Reports said that this Canadian University transferred bitcoins worth 20,000 Canadian dollars to its hackers as the university was unable to decode the data which was encrypted by the Ransomware.
Encrypted E-mails And Important Files
The Ransomware attack was targeted by the hackers to encrypt the university e-mails and file system. Because of this malware, the Canadian University was unable to retrieve the important e-mails and data which were stored in their servers.
University Workers Failed To Crack The Code
The IT workers in the University tried to decrypt the encoded data before they finally gave up. The University Of Calgary tried its best but failed to crack the hash set by the Ransomware hackers.
Also, in addition to that, one Expert also suggested the university not to pay them as it would only encourage the hacker to blackmail them further. But what would the University do without their important data? They resorted to the payment afterall.
100s Of Computers Affected
The University told the local newspaper that more than 100 of its computers were hacked and infected with Ransomware. The data also told that it had been more than a month since the attack was launched.
It is bizarre to know that even with such highly developed technology and security features, Ransomware attacks are still increasing day by day. Intel also warned that Ransomwares are spreading over the computers in the world at an alarming rate.
In February 2016, the Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center was forced to pay $17,000 in order to restore access to their system.
At the end of the same month, Melrose Police Department in Massachusetts also paid $450 after it was caught up in a similar attack.
“It’s very tempting for organisations to pay out the ransom because that might be the only way they can get their data back, but that makes it worse for everyone else because it encourages more people to set up schemes like the one used in the Calgary case,” commented Dr Steven Murdoch from University College London.
It would have been way better if nobody paid them for the attacks. All it does is encourage them to spread more. But coming to think about it, we do need our data don’t we. Its kinda like being in a trapped situation.
“The hackers are threatening to publicly publish information they found on your computers if you refuse to pay, which acts as a double incentive to comply.”
The University of Calgary has confirmed and said there was no indication of “any personal or other university data was released to the public”.