The Kershaw County School District, a prominent educational institution in the USA, has allegedly fallen victim to a cyberattack by the notorious Black Suit ransomware group.
The cybercriminals claim to successfully infiltrated the school’s systems, leading to the unauthorized extraction and subsequent leak of a staggering 17.5 GB of sensitive data.
Magnitude of Cyberattack on Kershaw County School
The Kershaw County School District, accommodating more than 10,500 students and boasting a staff of over 1,000 employees, has become the latest target in a string of cyberattacks plaguing the US education sector.
The Cyber Express team reached out to school authorities for confirmation of the cyberattack. However, at the time of reporting, no official response has been received, casting uncertainty over the legitimacy of the cyberattack on Kershaw County School claims.
Interestingly, the school’s official website remains operational and unaffected, raising questions about the credibility of the Kershaw County School cyberattack assertions.
This cyberattack on Kershaw County School marks a recurring trend in the education sector, particularly K-12 institutions, which have increasingly become prime targets for cybercriminals.
Why Educational Institutions Are Targets
A research report from the Center for Internet Security highlights the vulnerability of public schools in the US to such malicious activities. This revelation follows the closure of two US schools due to recent cyberattacks, further highlighting the severity of the situation.
The Jackson County Intermediate School District (ISD) faced a disruptive ‘system outage,’ prompting the closure of several public schools reliant on its technology services. The outage impacted critical systems, including telephones, classroom technology, and heating facilities.
As investigations into the incident continue, Superintendent Kevin Oxley declared a day’s leave for affected schools in Jackson and Hillsdale counties, aiming to facilitate the thorough detection and resolution of the issue.
In a separate incident, Stanford University, a prestigious research institution, grappled with a cybersecurity breach in November 2023. The Akira ransomware group claimed responsibility for the attack, which targeted the university’s Department of Public Safety. Stanford University released a statement acknowledging the incident and emphasizing ongoing investigations to assess the extent of the impact.
These relentless cyberattacks on educational institutions raise pressing questions about the motivations behind such targeted actions. As schools and universities increasingly find themselves in the crosshairs of cybercriminals, the implications of these attacks on the education sector’s infrastructure, data security, and overall functionality become subjects of urgent concern.
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