Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Hackers Breached Western Sydney University Microsoft 365 & Sharepoint Environments

Western Sydney University has informed approximately 7,500 individuals today of an unauthorized access incident involving its IT network.

The breach, first identified in January 2024, affected the University’s Microsoft Office 365 environment, including email accounts and SharePoint files.

The earliest known unauthorized access dates back to May 17, 2023.

The University promptly shut down the intrusion, initiated an investigation, and implemented remediation measures to prevent further unauthorized access.

Interim Vice-Chancellor Professor Clare Pollock expressed deep regret over the incident, stating, “On behalf of the University, I unreservedly apologize for this incident and its impact on our community.

It is deeply regrettable, and we are committed to transparently rectifying the matter and fulfilling our obligations.”

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Investigation and Preventative Measures

Since the breach was discovered, Western Sydney University has conducted a thorough investigation to understand the incident’s nature, scope, and scale.

The University has worked closely with NSW Police and the NSW Information and Privacy Commission.

Monitoring and scanning efforts indicate that the preventative measures have prevented further unauthorized access.

The investigation also revealed that the University’s Solar Car Laboratory infrastructure might have been used as part of the incident.

Despite the breach, the University has not received any threats or demands related to the access to private information.

To protect its community, the University obtained an injunction from the NSW Supreme Court to prevent the use, transmission, and publication of any data involved in the incident.

Professor Pollock reassured the community, stating, “We appreciate that this may be upsetting, and we are here to support you as we work through this together.

We have established a dedicated phone line and website to answer any questions.

“The University continues to investigate the incident and will notify any additional individuals if further impacts are discovered.

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Divya is a Senior Journalist at GBhackers covering Cyber Attacks, Threats, Breaches, Vulnerabilities and other happenings in the cyber world.

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