#CyberFLASH: University of Calgary calls cyber insurance invaluable

computer-laptop-keyboard-852The University of Calgary is urging other institutions to purchase cyber insurance, saying in their case, it has paid off.

Officials dissected a recent malware attack, the school’s response — and the changes they’ve made — at a well-attended campus town hall Friday afternoon.

Linda Dalgetty, vice president of finance and services, says the school bought cyber insurance last year and although it didn’t cover the $20,000 ransom the school paid, it was invaluable in other ways.

“In fact one of my messages coming out of this to my peers, both in Alberta and across Canada, is this is a good thing for you to have,” Dalgetty said.

“And again not just becasue it’s that monetary recovery, it’s the value that we had from helping us going through a difficult time with this malware crisis.”

She says the insurance came in handy hours after the school bought it.

“It was quite interesting, we made the decision to buy it, it went live on I think a Friday morning at 12:01 a.m., and our first phishing attack was at 2 a.m. that day, so it was very coincidental,” she explained.

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#CyberFLASH: Malware infection of University of Calgary computers partly fixed

university-of-calgary-entranceIT teams at the University of Calgary have succeeded in partly eradicating a malware attack that had officials warning students and staff not to use any school-issued computers Monday morning.

The malware is still affecting the school’s exchange email, Skype for Business, secure wireless and Active Directory systems.

University of Calgary spent $90,000 on legal fees related to CBC request for information

“Major progress has been made towards resolving current systems issues caused by malware, which is software intended to damage or disable computers and computer systems,” the U of C said in a release.

The school’s wireless network and Office 365 email systems are now operational. Exchange email and Skype for Business remain impacted, the school says.

“It is now safe to use UCalgary-issued computers to access available UCalgary networks and applications,” officials said in a release. “There are a number of users who remain impacted by the malware and they will not be able to access any UCalgary systems.”

Teams have been working non-stop to resolve the situation since it was first detected.

“It points out that anybody can be vulnerable. I don’t know how they got infected or how the malware got in there, but it’s a good lesson to everybody to be very, very skeptical if somebody tells you to download a file or click on a link or go to this webpage,” said U of C professor and cyber-security specialist Tom Keenan.

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