CWC 2023News

Ransomware Gang Demands £450,000 from Scottish University for Stolen Data on Dark Web

A ransomware gang, believed to be called Rhysida, recently carried out a cyber attack on the University of the West of Scotland (UwS), stealing confidential files, including personal staff details. The gang has demanded a ransom of £450,000 in Bitcoin, threatening to sell the data on the dark web if their demands are not met. The attack has raised concerns about the growing challenge of cyber attacks, with companies and institutions worldwide becoming targets for hackers.Rhysida, known for targeting critical sectors in different countries, has added UwS to its “victim list.” The gang’s dark web domain contains sensitive information such as bank details, national insurance numbers, and internal university documents. The group gave a seven-day ultimatum to pay the ransom, or the data will be sold to the highest bidder through their dark web portal.The attack on UwS is not the first major cyber attack in Scotland. In the past, companies like car dealer Arnold Clark and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) have also fallen victim to ransomware attacks. These attacks have led to the leaking of customer information and substantial financial losses.The lack of technical knowledge among the general population is considered a major issue contributing to the success of cyber attacks. Cybersecurity experts stress the importance of educating individuals about protecting their devices and personal information. While the UK is seen as proactive in dealing with cyber threats, cybercrime remains a growing challenge worldwide.Authorities are investigating the incident, and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is supporting the university in managing its cybersecurity. The Scottish Government is aware of the ongoing investigation and is providing assistance.In conclusion, the cyber attack on the University of the West of Scotland underscores the increasing threat posed by ransomware gangs. Organizations must prioritize cybersecurity measures and educate their staff and users to protect against such attacks. Collaboration between government agencies, private companies, and cybersecurity experts is essential to safeguard critical infrastructure and combat cyber threats effectively.

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