A contagious “ransomware” cyber-attack just happened to cling onto the marble columns of University College London. Renowned for its premier recognition in academics and “centre of excellence in cyber-security research”, a status awarded by the GCHQ intelligence and monitoring service, it was however embarrassed by an enemy from the web!
The widespread cyber attack began on Wednesday and persisted. On Thursday morning, access to online networks was restricted. Besides that, the university has warned staff and students of the risk of data loss and “very substantial disruption.” The root of this cyber attack was the usage of “phishing” emails, which hold links with destructive software.
I know you might be wondering: what a “ransomware” cyber attack is? I am not your local cyber security expert but I do know that ransomware attacks are where computer systems are locked and threatened with damaging software unless payments are made. Every student and staff member were urged not to open any suspicious emails or links to further prevent the risk of more infection.
Although the situation seems to be under control, a great way to prevent future cyber attacks, especially a “ransomware” kind, is to have an extra blanket of security layers and a solid back-up regime. Even if a strain of malware slithers into a security layer, there will be an active and strong cyber defense.