Harvard Hit By Ransomware Attack As Cyberattacks Escalate

(PatriotWise.com)- After being hit by more than a year of academic disruption owing to the Chinese coronavirus, Howard University announced this week that classes would be temporarily canceled as the result of a ransomware attack.

The university issued a press release on Monday describing that there was no evidence of any personal information relating to staff or students being made vulnerable but did say that their IT team discovered unusual activity on their school network. It prompted the shutdown of classes while their IT team investigated what was going on.

The Washington, D.C. historically black university said that based on their investigation and the information that they have obtained so far, they understand that it was a ransomware attack.

Classes were closed for a day the following day, and the campus was only open to essential employees. All nonessential employees and students were encouraged to stay at home while they handled the crisis.

In-person classes began again on Wednesday.

The number of cyberattacks affecting the United States has increased since President Joe Biden entered the White House, with most of these attacks being initiated by China and Russia.

Ransomware cyberattacks typically involve hackers obtaining personal and confidential information – or critical information for a business or organization – and locking it down so that the users can no longer access it. They then demand that a payment is made, often in cryptocurrency to make it harder to locate, before that data is once again made available.

On Tuesday, the university said that its Wi-Fi network was still down and they are currently working on creating a new emergency system to use while IT specialists continue to manage the problem.