The ransomware epidemic has affected and continues to affect all industries, including healthcare, manufacturing and finance. Since 2020, however, the education industry has been targeted as much as or more than any other sector. Indeed, approximately 23 percent of the 1,250+ data security incidents that BakerHostetler helped clients manage over the past year involved educational institutions – the highest percentage of any business sector.
It should not come as a surprise that cyber criminals are targeting educational institutions. First, educational institutions – especially colleges and universities – generally maintain a treasure trove of personal information about students and employees, as well as sensitive research data that they might be willing to pay threat actors not to post on the dark web. Moreover, educational institutions operate on strict timelines and can often ill afford to cancel classes for days or weeks at a time. As such, when faced with the choice of paying a ransom or risking being unable to hold classes or