Dutch university receives ransom money back online, with interest

A Dutch university that fell victim to a major ransomware attack has partially recieved the stolen funds… meanwhile, the money has more than doubled in value, a news release. said Saturday.

Maastricht University south in 2019 was affected by a large amount Cyber ​​attack in which the criminals used ransomware, a type of malware that locks valuable data and can only be accessed after the victim pays a full ransom.

“Criminals encrypted hundreds of Windows servers and backup systems, preventing 25,000 students and staff from accessing scientific data, libraries and correspondence,” De Volkskrant said.

The hackers demanded 200,000 EUR (about 1.6 crore Rs) in Bitcoin.

The newspaper said: “After a week, the university decided to join at the request of the criminal gang.

“This is partly because personal data is at risk of being lost and students are unable to take their exams or do their dissertations,” it said.

Dutch police traced part of the ransom paid to the account of a money launderer in Ukraine.

Prosecutors in 2020 seized this man’s accounts, which included several different accounts electronic money including part of the ransom paid by Maastricht.

“Now, after more than two years, it is finally possible to transfer that money to the Netherlands, the value of which has increased from 40,000 euros to half a million euros,” the newspaper said.

Maastricht University will now receive EUR 500,000 (approximately Rs 4.1 crore).

“This money will not go into a general fund, but into a fund to help financially needy students,” said Maastricht University IT & Information Director Michiel Borgers.

De Volkskrant added that the investigation into the hackers responsible for the attack on the university is still ongoing.

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