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More Than 500 Schools in the U.S. Hit by Ransomware in 2019, Says Report

A recent report published by the cybersecurity firm Armor says ransomware infections have hit over 500 US schools in 2019 to date. Armor warns the rate of attack seems to be picking up with 15 new ransomware victims in the last two weeks, all of them educational institutions. From the report:

Since January 2019, Armor has identified a total of 49 educational institutions and/or school districts that have publicly announced ransomware attacks. "These attacks have potentially affected 500 K-12 schools. Since January, Armor has identified 182 ransomware victims in the U.S., including schools, municipalities, law enforcement agencies and healthcare networks. Out of the 182 victim organizations in 2019 in the U.S., educational institutions (49) make up the second largest pool of victims, after municipalities (70), followed by healthcare (27)."

"Cybercriminals know these organizations can't afford to shut down, they are often using out of date hardware and software, and they have few security measures in place. This is a deadly combination in the case of a ransomware attack, which provides for a high sense of urgency and a high probability of large payments." (Chris Hinkley, Head of Threat Resistance at Armor)

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