SCC Pays $228,000 Ransom

Ransom note identifies the demands of hackers

Joseph Engbert-Carbonetti, Staff Writer

SCC has paid a $228,000 ransom to the group that shut down the college’s computer system at the end of the winter quarter and disrupted finals.
The Ebbtide has acquired the ransom note from the ransom attack that temporarily shut down on-campus operations. The group that participated in the attack is a well-known hacking group called Royal. According to Tech Crunch, a website that specializes in technology news, this group is well-known in the U.S. The group typically attacks medical facilities and public institutions.

Ransomware attacks from the group Royal typically request between $1 million to $11 million. The group typically uses phishing links to infect an entire network. Cat Chiappa the director of communications and marketing at SCC confirmed that the ransomware group Royal ransomware was responsible for this ransom attack and that the ransom was paid, it was disclosed that after significant negotiation with the group, the amount paid to the threat actors was $228,000 which is significantly lower than the average ransom payment reported for these types of attacks. This amount was fully covered by SCC’s insurance. This means that the cost does not come directly out of students’ pockets.

However, because all ransom attacks are illegal there is no way to confirm or deny whether the group is still in possession of any personnel data.
The consequences of this attack resulted in the campus going remote until April 25th. SCC also feared that the group responsible would not delete the enrollment information they have gained access to. Most campus services resumed shortly after the beginning of the spring quarter including on-campus Wi-Fi, and printing services.