After breaches, higher-ed schools adopt two-factor authentication

Ann Bednarz reports:

Payday didn’t go as planned on January 2, 2014, for some Boston University employees. On that day, about a dozen faculty members discovered their paychecks hadn’t been deposited into their bank accounts. Thieves had changed the victims’ direct deposit information and rerouted their pay. BU’s IT security team traced the attack to a phishing email sent to 160 people at the university. The email – which prompted BU faculty to click on a link and confirm their log-in details – led to the compromise of 33 accounts. Thirteen faculty members had their paychecks stolen.



After BU warned faculty and staff of the paycheck heist, the attackers send another phishing attempt that played off BU’s warning and directed recipients to another bogus site. “The folks who sent the original message were actively watching us,” Shamblin said. “They coopted my authority for a second attack on my people.”


Meanwhile, 1,200 miles away, University of Iowa experienced similar attacks.

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