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Cyber Attacks on UK’s Student Loans Company

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In 2017-2018, the UK Student Loans Company, a public-sector company that aids students with college expenses, reported that cyber criminals had tried to infiltrate their systems 965,369 times. As ComputerWeekly reported, “Cyber criminals used a range of techniques, as well as malware, malicious emails and calls, in attempts to access confidential financial data belonging to students, in massive uptick in attacks in the past year.”

According to Student Loans Company officials, despite the significant uptick in hacking attempts, just one attack was successful in breaching the system.

ITPro wrote that the attacks on the Student Loans Company, were “not a surprise” because SLC  “holds a loan book worth £117.8 billion” and “data on 8.1 million registered customers.” Attacks have “become a part of life,” spokesperson for SLC told ITPro.

The chief information risk officer for the Financial Services, Greg Temm, told ComputerWeekly, “While organizations can’t always stop an attack, it can put steps in place to reduce the amount of time it takes to recover quickly, minimizing impact and ultimately preserving customer trust and loyalty.” SLC is taking steps to protect itself against future attacks.

Sources:

Keumars AfifiSabet, “Student Loans Company hit by a million cyber attacks last year,” IT Pro news, February 4, 2019, https://www.itpro.co.uk/security/32902/student-loans-company-hit-by-a-million-cyber-attacks-last-year.

Warrick Ashfold, “Massive uptick in cyber attacks targeting Student Loans Company,” Computer Weekly, February 4, 2019, https://www.computerweekly.com/news/252456975/Massive-uptick-in-cyber-attacks-targeting-Student-Loans-Company.

Student Researcher:  William Foreman (Indian River State College)

Faculty Evaluator:  Elliot D. Cohen (Indian River State College)

Daniel Christof

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