Cyber attack suspected in Hartnell college on its network early on Sunday morning. The public community college in California shut down its servers. It is now slowly bringing the network back online.
(TNS) — In response to a potential cybersecurity concern, Hartnell College’s governing board conducted an urgent meeting on Wednesday night to discuss the ongoing network outage at the institution.
The college’s security system detected unusual behavior at 6 a.m. on Sunday, prompting Hartnell Vice President of Technology Chelsy Pham. He has to take precautions and shut down the college’s servers at around 8 a.m.
Pham reported that the network had high levels of activity, which is unusual for a Sunday morning.
Pham said, “When we notice considerable activity, usually there are classes going on, but for a Sunday morning at seven, that’s suspicious.” Due to this, our system alerted us, saying, “Hey, there’s something going on, you might want to check it out.”
According to Pham, the college is striving to gradually reactivate the network. Although some lab and classroom conditions have to be changed, lessons have not been disrupted because the school’s online teaching platform, Canvas, is up and running.
The college’s phone system is still down right now, but emails and text messages are still being delivered, according to Pham. Earlier FBI warned school districts regarding the attacks.
Hartnell President Michael Gutierrez remarked, “We are rebuilding our system gradually and securely. “But in general, individuals have responded to this disturbance fairly rapidly. And I must admit, I’m really pleased with our college.
Pham stated that there is no set date for when the network will be completely functioning once more, but the college is taking extra efforts to get the system back up.
She added, “We’re being very, very careful. “We are taking very careful measures to make sure it is secure and safe.”
According to her, an inquiry into whether the incident was a cyber attack is being carried out by Hartnell in collaboration with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
According to Pham and Gutierrez, this episode is the first of its kind at Hartnell College. The most recent system failure at Hartnell, however, is just the most recent in a spate of California school closures due to suspected cybersecurity risks.
The Los Angeles Unified School District, which has 70,000 personnel and over 600,000 pupils. It was most recently the target of a cyberattack over Labor Day weekend. The students and others using university email are at risk.
On July 4, malware attacked the Institution of the Desert in Palm Springs as well. In late August, a cyberattack struck Sierra College, a community college in the Sacramento region.
The COVID-19 epidemic, compelled colleges and school districts to rely on technology to instruct students. Such attacks have grown to be a major threat to American institutions.
The K-12 institutions
The FBI issued a warning to K–12 institutions in 2020 about continued ransomware attacks and data breaches into the 2020–2021 academic year. Data from the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center show that K–12 schools. These were involved in 57% of all ransomware attacks reported to the organization in August. And September, up from 28% from January through July.
Although the public was not permitted to join Hartnell’s emergency governing board meeting where the current problem was reviewed. Gutierrez said the college is preparing a statement to be released in the coming days.
The college will keep looking into the issue and gradually bring systems back up until then.
According to Gutierrez, “I think what helps us to be patient is basically learning from other universities what not to do. “In addition, our classes have continued. With that, there hasn’t been any disruption, so we can be patient.