Cyberattack on Helsinki city compromises data of 80K students, 40K employees

(MENAFN) Finnish cyber authorities revealed to a French news agency on Tuesday that hackers may have compromised the personal information of approximately 80,000 students, their guardians, and 40,000 city employees in a cyberattack targeting the city of Helsinki.

Jussi Eronen from the Cyber Security Centre described the incident as one of the most significant cyberattacks against Finnish municipalities. The attack, which occurred on April 30, targeted a data network utilized by Helsinki's Education Division, responsible for managing early childhood to upper secondary education.

The cybercriminal exploited a vulnerability in a server linked to the network, enabling access to user names, email addresses, and personal ID numbers of students, guardians, and school staff. Additionally, user names and email addresses of all city personnel were compromised.

Helsinki city manager Jukka-Pekka Ujula expressed grave concern over the breach, emphasizing its potential repercussions for individuals and staff. Although most files within the breached network were non-sensitive, some contained confidential or sensitive personal information, including medical certificates and sick leave records.

The city admitted difficulty in accurately assessing the extent of data accessed by the perpetrator due to the massive volume of information under investigation. Satu Jarvenkallas, executive director of the Education Division, highlighted the ongoing challenges in determining the scope of compromised data.

In response to the breach, the Cyber Security Centre is extending support to the affected parties, underscoring the seriousness of the incident and the imperative for enhanced cybersecurity measures to safeguard against future attacks.



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