Cyber Attack at the University of Calgary
In 2016, the University of Calgary (U of C) was celebrating its 50th anniversary with a variety of events, such as the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, which brought visiting scholars from across the globe. At the same time, Alberta, ON, had been hit with significant forest fires, and many residents that were evacuated from northern communities had moved into U of C residences. The campus was alive with activity when its information technology (IT) systems were encrypted in a ransomware attack. The university's emergency response team had to act quickly to identify and isolate the root cause of the problem and to decide how to contain it, whether to pay the demanded ransom, and what to tell members of the university and the wider community. The university's response to this threat and its management through the crisis would ultimately shape the IT team and future investment decisions. Naor Cohen is affiliated with University of Calgary. Catherine Heggerud is affiliated with University of Calgary.