The UK’s Open University was targeted with more than 1 million malicious email attacks from January to September this year, based on official statistics obtained from the think tank Parliament Street after a Freedom of Information (FoI) request.
The information revealed that strikes on the higher education establishment, which provides flexible undergraduate and postgraduate classes for adults of all ages, had been equally distributed through the nine-month interval, averaging 132,368 strikes and spam messages each month.
Encouragingly, every among the 1,191,312 malicious emails, that comprised malware, spam, and phishing attacks, were blocked from the Open University’s servers.
In general, 6804 messages have been blocked as a result of a feeling of malware whereas 16,452 phishing emails were discovered and prevented from reaching their intended goals.
Education associations are heavily targeted at cyber-attacks because of the onset of the COVID-19 catastrophe, together with hazard actors exploiting to increase in online learning techniques as a result of social distancing measures. As an example, a study in September found that distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks against online instructional tools are more than three times more prevalent in 2020 than they were last year.
Chris Ross, SVP earnings, global in Barracuda Networks commented: “The essence of this Open University, and also the simple fact that a vast majority of its classes occur online, signifies cyber-attackers will inevitably try to target the prosperity of information stored in its servers, so thus the substantial amount of scam attacks confronting the establishment.
“To add to this, our latest study demonstrated that spear-phishing strikes are targeting educational institutions throughout the world, with over 3.5 million phishing emails hitting 1,000 worldwide universities and schools from June through to September of the year.”
Ross went on to say although it’s surely a great thing which the Open University has, thus far, managed to successfully shield itself by a data breach, so it’s necessary that safety standards are preserved, and the ideal software and instruction is continually updated, to keep up with the quickly changing cyber threat-scape.
“Additionally, as a result of sensitivity of data stored in its servers, schooling institutions have to make certain that all information is backed up in a third party, encrypted cloud backup option, which may also enable protection in the growing tendency in ransomware strikes facing universities”