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Ava R-I School District struck by a ransomware attack


It has been happening all over the United States (U.S.), and now it has happened in the Ava R-I School District of Missouri. The Ava School District is struck by a ransomware attack.


The Ava Schools came to know about the ransomware attack, when it noticed ransom note on their district printers. The ransom notes mysteriously come out of the printers in Ava School District, and demands money to have the information back. The ransom notes also said to send email for getting a code from the hackers, which would show that the hackers are having control. After this, the district would need to pay for getting the information back.


Upon discovery, the district has shut down their network as a precautionary measure. In addition, the school notified their staff as well as parents about this incident.


Dr. Jason Dial, the Ava School Superintendent, does not think the ransomware attack that struck early on the morning of Sep. 12, 2019, got any important information or data.


Dr. Dial told the KY3 that "it could have been a lot worse. We still got compromised. We found some holes. We're in the middle of fixing those. We knew some were there, that we were in the middle of fixing anyway. So we feel really comfortable about moving forward".


Dial said that Ava is using encrypted data, has good backup system, and stores information on the off-site servers, so the district's employee, student and financial information has not been compromised. The Ava School District is at this time are restoring the files as well as the data from their backup.


Moreover, the staff of the district has co-ordinated with one cybersecurity firm in order to make sure that important information was not compromised in this attack. The school has also decided to test their employees against the phishing emails, and will provide training to them on how to recognize deceiving emails.


Dial told the KY3 that "we're going to start spoofing our own employees. Our technology department is going to send an email from an unknown address and see if they're opening that, to try and help train them to learn how to keep viruses off our network".


Dr. Dial added that the district is having a cyber-insurance policy, which covers any loss as a result of ransomware attacks.


» SPAMfighter News - 9/30/2019

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