Criminals use malware, malicious emails and calls to access confidential financial data belonging to students
The Student Loans Company (SLC) has been hit by nearly one million cyber attacks in the last year, according to official figures. In data released under Freedom of Information (FoI) legislation, The SLC revealed it was targeted by 965,639 attempts to infiltrate its systems in the last financial year (2017/18).
The findings, collated by researchers the Parliament Street think tank, discovered that these results were up from a mere three attempts in financial year 2015/16 and 95 in 2016/17.
Out of the attempts for the last financial year, one attack was successful in breeching the system. The SLC also detailed 323 attempts of malware and 235 malicious emails or calls, on top of the 965,639 attempts listed as ‘cyber attacks’.
Of the 965,639 cyber attack attempts, the FOI request detailed 127 were not blocked and were run as incidents. This number also contains the blocks at the perimeter which is why it is significantly larger than previous years.
The number of Malware attempts was highest in 2016/17 at 1015 with 81 reports of malicious emails or calls.
Terry Ray, Senior Vice President at Imperva:
“It’s no surprise that cybercriminals are relentlessly targeting the personal financial details of students, putting the wellbeing of tens of thousands of individuals at risk. Tackling this problem means investing heavily in the latest cybersecurity measures, to keep hackers out and limit the risk of a major data breach.”