A Dutch university targeted by a massive ransomware attack has partially got back its stolen money, which doubled in value in the meantime.
The southern Maastricht University 2019 was slammed by a large cyberattack in which criminals utilized ransomware.
“The criminals had encrypted hundreds of Windows servers and backup systems, preventing 25,000 students and employees from accessing scientific data, library and mail,” the daily De Volkskrant announced.
The hackers asked for EUR 200,000 in Bitcoins.
“After a week the university decide to accede to the criminal gang’s demand,” the paper said.
“When, now after more than two years, it was finally possible to get that money to the Netherlands, the value had increased from 40,000 euros to half-a-million euros,” the paper asserted.
Maastricht University is going to receive EUR 500,000 back.
“This money will not go to a general fund, but into a fund to help financially strapped students,” Maastricht University ICT director Michiel Borgers explained.
“This was partly because personal data was in danger of being lost and students were unable to take an exam or work on their theses,” it added.
Dutch police learned that the ransom was paid to an account in Ukraine.
Prosecutors 2020 confiscated this man’s account, which consisted of several different cryptocurrencies.
“The investigation into the hackers responsible for the attack on the university is still ongoing,” De Volkskrant added.