Howard University hit with ransomware attack, cancels classes

Howard University hit with ransomware attack, cancels classes
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Howard University announced the cancellation of classes after being hit with a ransomware attack last week, though it said there was no evidence of personal information being stolen. 

In a news release Monday, Howard said that its information technology team detected unusual activity on the school’s network on Friday, prompting an investigate into the situation. 

“Based on the investigation and the information we have to date, we know the University has experienced a ransomware cyberattack,” said the historically black university in Washington, D.C. 

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The university said Tuesday's classes will be canceled due to the attack, adding that the campus will be open for essential employees only and advising nonessential employees to stay at home. 

“We are currently working with leading external forensic experts and law enforcement to fully investigate the incident and the impact," it said in the news release.

"To date, there has been no evidence of personal information being accessed or exfiltrated; however, our investigation remains ongoing, and we continue to work toward clarifying the facts surrounding what happened and what information has been accessed."

This comes as some major U.S. companies such as Colonial Pipeline and food processor JBS USA have spent millions to recover from ransomware cyberattacks this year. 

Howard has engaged both the FBI and the D.C. government about the ransomware attack and has said it will implement new online safety measures to protect student data and its facilities.