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Butler County Community College remains closed after ransomware attack

China Global Cyberattack Ransomware
Mark Schiefelbein
In this May 13, 2017, file photo, a screenshot of the warning screen from a purported ransomware attack, as captured by a computer user in Taiwan, is seen on a laptop in Beijing.

A ransomware attack has forced Butler County Community College, BC3, to cancel classes and close campus for two days. The college is working with a cybersecurity firm to restore its devices, according to a statement.

All BC3 locations will be closed Nov. 29 and Nov. 30 as a result of the attack. Noncredit courses are canceled, and students and staff will not be able to receive services while the school’s information technology department is focused on recovering from the hack.

The staff has “worked extensively over the holiday break to address the issue,” said James Hrabosky, BC3’s vice president for administration and finance.

Databases, hard drives, servers and other devices were affected by the attack. The school did not disclose the name of the cybersecurity firm assisting them.

The department first noticed widespread technology issues last Wednesday. After an investigation, it appears the hack originated Nov. 19. The IT department began performing maintenance on several of the school’s servers shortly thereafter.

In-person credit courses had already been scheduled to be held online this week as a mitigation measure against the spread of COVID-19.

The school switched all in-person credit courses to a remote format for the final week of the fall semester.

A spokesperson with the school could not be reached for comment.