December 2, 2023

Río Hondo School in Southern California is coping with a cybersecurity incident that restricted campus capabilities for days earlier than most companies have been returned.

The college, which serves greater than 31,000 college students within the Los Angeles metro area, didn’t say when the problems started however wrote in an October 23 Fb put up that entry to its web site and different school-run instruments had been restored.

The following day, the college added that its IT workforce had resolved a problem that restricted the school’s skill to disburse monetary help. Monetary help disbursements have been despatched out on October 26.

On the time, the college didn’t determine the disruptions as associated to cyberattacks however on Tuesday the LockBit ransomware gang added the college to its listing of victims, giving officers till November 20 to pay an undisclosed ransom.

In a press release to Recorded Future Information, the college acknowledged that the outages have been attributable to a cyberattack however didn’t name it a ransomware assault.

“After studying of this incident, we instantly started an investigation to find out the trigger and scope of the incident,” a spokesperson mentioned.

“We wish our college students and the Río Hondo neighborhood to know that we place a excessive worth on sustaining the integrity and safety of the info we maintain in our techniques, and we’re working diligently to finish our investigation of the incident. We’ll present an extra replace as soon as our investigation is full.”

The college didn’t say whether or not a ransom could be paid or if regulation enforcement is concerned within the response.

Emsisoft ransomware skilled Brett Callow mentioned the assault was the 69th on a college or school this yr, an all-time file far surpassing the 44 seen in 2022. The assaults on increased training this yr don’t embrace the a whole bunch of faculties affected by the MOVEit knowledge breaches, Callow added.

Simply within the final two months, Stanford College and the College of Michigan have confirmed assaults that had critical results on campus networks, pupil knowledge and extra. Ransomware gangs have additionally proven a proclivity for concentrating on neighborhood schools within the final yr, attacking a number of throughout the U.S.

Regardless of rumored dissension inside its ranks, the LockBit ransomware gang has continued its unparalleled streak of devastating assaults internationally, far outpacing any of its hacking rivals.

The group launched at the least 81 assaults in September and has already claimed assaults on a number of New York hospitals, a Virginia college district and multibillion-dollar expertise companies agency CDW.

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Jonathan Greig

Jonathan Greig is a Breaking Information Reporter at Recorded Future Information. Jonathan has labored throughout the globe as a journalist since 2014. Earlier than transferring again to New York Metropolis, he labored for information shops in South Africa, Jordan and Cambodia. He beforehand lined cybersecurity at ZDNet and TechRepublic.