Hackers Attack University of Manchester

United Kingdom Europe Higher Education News by Erudera News Jun 09, 2023

University of Manchester

The University of Manchester, one of the leading higher education institutions in the United Kingdom, has been attacked by hackers on Friday morning.

Addressing the community, the university’s secretary and chief operating officer, Patrick Hackett, confirmed that individuals had accessed some of the university’s systems without authorization, and they may have copied the school’s data.

It is still under investigation what type of data the attackers have accessed, but the university has advised its community of students and staff to be vigilant to any suspicious emails, Erudera.com reports.

“Regrettably, I have to share with you the news that the University is the victim of a cyber incident. Our in-house experts and established expert external support are working around the clock to resolve this incident. We are working to understand what data have been accessed and will update you as more information becomes available,” Hackett said in a statement released today, June 9, 2023.

Hackett apologized to students and staff for the breach and said the university is working with relevant authorities, including Information Commissioner’s Office, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), the National Crime Agency, and other regulatory bodies, to investigate the case.

“We know this will cause concern to members of our community and we are very sorry for this. Our priority is to resolve this issue and provide information to those affected as soon as we are able to, and we are focusing all available resources,” the statement reads.

Additionally, the school advised staff members not to download files from university systems in order to create backups.

Cyberattacks are becoming frequent as criminal organizations advance their techniques. Just a few days ago, a group of Russian-speaking hackers targeted renowned institutions in the UK, such as British Airways, the BBC, and Boots.

The suspected cyberattack has affected thousands of employees from these institutions, as the information that attackers have accessed includes sensitive data such as bank account details and national security numbers, according to media reports.

Nonetheless, officials from the University of Manchester said that the cyber security incident is not linked to these employers. This was confirmed for the BBC by a university spokesperson.

The University of Manchester has one of the biggest student communities in the UK, with more than 26,000 undergraduate and 14,000 postgraduate students. The school’s data show over 14,000 people are employed at the university, including about 7,000 academic and research staff.

Earlier this month, the Graduate Market 2023 report by High Fliers Research included the University of Manchester as one of the best institutions for top UK employers to find graduates.

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