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Okanagan College caught in cyberattack

IT Services team interrupted a cybersecurity incident Jan. 9
Okanagan College is trying to determine whether any personal information has been compromised. (Black Press file photo)

Okanagan College (OC) was the target of a cyberattack on Jan. 9.

A letter from college president Neil Fassina updating the situation was made available to the media Wednesday (Jan. 11).

“On Monday morning, at about 6:15 a.m. our IT Services team interrupted a cybersecurity incident. This incident, which involved an unrecognized external agent, was identified by our team’s routine and proactive surveillance.”

Fassina said network access across all campuses was disabled within 45 minutes, and an investigation into the attack is underway. OC has also brought in external cybersecurity experts to help.

“Unfortunately, as a result of the cyberattack, our network services continue to be offline and this morning, the outage has impacted our public website and learning management site (Moodle). It has also impacted our ability to send all-user emails to our students and staff.”

OC is trying to determine whether any personal information has been compromised, and out of an abundance of caution, is notifying the community of the attack.

“Please be assured that we take privacy and the protection of personal information of our students and staff very seriously,” added Fissina. “We are working very hard to restore secure access as soon as possible.”

OC recommends students and staff protect themselves from the risk of identity theft or fraud by doing the following:

  • If you receive unusual emails or text messages in the days ahead claiming to be from Okanagan College and asking for personal information that you were not expecting, please be vigilant;
  • Do not send personal information unless you are confident the communication is authentic;
  • Never respond to any unsolicited requests for your financial information and stay aware of unauthorized transactions related to any of your accounts.

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Gary Barnes

About the Author: Gary Barnes

Recently joined Kelowna Capital News and WestK News as a multimedia journalist in January 2022. With almost 30 years of experience in news reporting and radio broadcasting...
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