Washington Post: The cyberattack struck Los Angeles Valley College late last month, disrupting email, voice mail and computer systems at the public community college in Southern California. Then, school officials found a ransom note.
The missive advised the college that its electronic files had been encrypted and that the files could only be unlocked with a “private key.” The attackers would supply the key after receiving payment in the valuable digital currency known as bitcoin, which can be used anonymously without a centralized bank.
“You have just 7 days to send us the BitCoin after 7 days we will remove your private keys and it’s impossible to recover your files,” the attackers warned, according to a copy of the note obtained by The Washington Post.
Leaders of the Los Angeles Community College District decided to pay the ransom.
The college paid $28,000 and the files were restored.
ArsTechnica: According to the FBI, ransomware payouts in the United States jumped from $25 million in all of 2015 to over $209 million in just the first quarter of 2016.
Clearly, this is just the beginning.