A hacker is trying to extort a Canadian university, threatening to dump student information unless university top brass pay 30,000 CAD (23,000 USD).
The extortion attempt’s victim is the University of Fraser Valley (UFV), a Canadian university located in the town of Abbotsford, south-east of Vancouver.
Based on the currently available information, a hacker or hacker group breached the university’s network from where it gathered information such as names, email addresses, phone numbers, physical addresses, grades information, some instances, limited financial details, and possibly more.
Hacker circulated personal data of 29 UFV students
The time of the intrusion is unknown, but over the last weekend, the hacker sent an email to UFV students with the personal information of 29 UVF students.
The same email also contained a ransom demand of 30,000 CAD (23,000 USD). The hacker gave UFV officials 48 hours to pay, or he’d release more info.
The University came clean on Monday and admitted the breach in series of four security alerts sent over the course of the week.
“The students directly affected have been contacted and UFV is working with them to take steps to secure their privacy and personal information,” a UFV spokesperson said.
University shuts down email system
On Wednesday, UFV shut down its email system until November 6, in an attempt to prevent the proliferation of other emails containing data of other students.
The hacker’s point of entry and the number of compromised systems are currently unknown. The University is still investigating the breach, together with Abbotsford police.
The deadline has passed, but it’s unclear if the University paid the ransom demand.
In mid-September, a hacker group known as TheDarkOverlord (TDO) tried to extort schools in the US state of Montana. The hacker’s extortion attempts failed, even after he made bomb threats against the school and physical violence against students.
Bleeping Computer reached out to the hacker group through an intermediary and TDO denied it was behind this recent extortion attempt.