The University of California (UC) was the victim of a ransomware attack via the Accellion Secure File Transfer Appliance (FTA).

The state university system its institution, along with several other government agencies, private companies and other schools have been involved in an Accellion-centric attack.

“An unauthorized individual appears to have copied and transferred UC files by exploiting a vulnerability in Accellion’s file transfer service,” according to an UC advisory.

UC added officials do not believe university’s systems or networks ended up compromised as a result. The school system said it reported the incident to federal law enforcement, took measures to contain it and has begun an investigation.

“We understand those behind this attack have published online screenshots of personal information, and we will notify members of the UC community if we believe their data was leaked in this manner,” the university said.

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In an updated advisory on Monday, UC officials said, we believe the person(s) behind this attack are sending threatening mass emails to members of the UC community in an attempt to scare people into giving them money. The message states: “Your personal data has been stolen and will be published.”

In a follow up statement on Friday, the school said it believed the stolen information included names, birthdates, social security numbers, and bank account information.

“The attackers are threatening to publish, or have published, stolen information on the dark web in an attempt to extort organizations and individuals,” the university said.

“We are working with local and federal law enforcement and third-party vendors to investigate this incident, to assess the information that has been compromised, to enforce the law and to limit the release of stolen information,” it continued.

Accellion first disclosed in February its file transfer service ended up breached in late December.

Stanford University School of Medicine said in a statement Friday it was a victim of the cyber incident.


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