Security Alert: FBI Warns of Ransomware Attacks Targeting Colleges and Universities

March 31, 2021

by Cybersecurity Ops

The USNH CISO’s office received an alert from the FBI recommending all university and college communities remain vigilant to guard against phishing attacks that seek to download malicious software designed to encrypt the institution’s data and hold it for ransom.  Additional information provided in this alert has been added to our email filtering rules to aid in detecting and containing malicious emails and attachments.

However, no system is full proof.  We need your help to in protecting against this ongoing threat.  Here are five things you can do to help safeguard your institution:

  1. Report all suspicious emails using the “report message” button in the email and select phishing from the drop down list or forward the email to
  2. Check the USNH Phishbowl to see if the email you are concerned about has been confirmed as phishing.
  3. Don’t click on links in suspicious emails.
  4. Don’t open attachments in emails that you were not expecting.
  5. If you click on a link or open an attachment and anything different than you were expecting occurs (e.g., the link doesn’t go where you expected, the attachment doesn’t contain any information) call your local Help Desk immediately for assistance.

If you are unsure about the legitimacy of an email, reach out to the Cybersecurity Ops team or call your local Help Desk to confirm the legitimacy of an email before taking any action.

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