Image: kennethaw88 via WikiMedia Commons

Lansing Community College cancels online classes after cyberattack

Lansing Community College is slowly bringing systems back online after experiencing a cyberattack on Friday that cut off campus Wi-Fi and forced the school to temporarily cancel its online courses.

In a note on its website, the school said there was no “evidence of a ransomware attack” but suspicious activity in the network environment was discovered by the IT team.

“We notified state and federal law enforcement, and disconnected our servers and internet from the outside world as a precaution to protect our systems and prevent damage,” the school said, adding that with the help of third-party specialists they had launched an investigation.

“That investigation remains ongoing, but we have restored operations securely and we can safely bring the college back online.”

On Sunday evening, the school wrote on Twitter that the campus Wi-Fi is back online. While they urged all students and faculty to change their passwords, they noted that the password update function is not currently working. Technical difficulties “may exist,” they wrote, as officials continue to bring things back online.

The college serves about 19,000 students in Michigan and offers 230 associate degree and certificate programs.

All typically online courses would be offline until at least Tuesday, the school warned.

In a Q&A, the school said there was “no evidence” to suggest that the personal information of students and faculty was accessed but explained that they would contact victims if their investigation discovered otherwise.

Community colleges continue to face a barrage of cyberattacks this year. In early March, a Massachusetts community college was forced to close its doors for multiple days due to a cyberattack that crippled most of the school’s systems.

The year began with Massachusetts-based Bristol Community College informing students that it was struggling to recover from a damaging cyberattack in late December.

Emsisoft ransomware expert Brett Callow said at least 13 colleges or universities have already reported being hit with ransomware or cyberattacks in 2023 – with several others denying they were targeted after being added to the list of victims posted by ransomware gangs.

Another Michigan community college was hit with ransomware less than a year ago, forcing the school to shut down all of its campuses as it dealt with the incident.

Jonathan Greig

Jonathan Greig is a Breaking News Reporter at Recorded Future News. Jonathan has worked across the globe as a journalist since 2014. Before moving back to New York City, he worked for news outlets in South Africa, Jordan and Cambodia. He previously covered cybersecurity at ZDNet and TechRepublic.

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