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WATCH: ‘Paying a ransom is the last, last, last resort’

A leading cybersecurity expert weighs in on the recent ransomware attack that cost the Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board more than $300,000

A pre-Christmas cyberattack cost the Huron-Superior Catholic District School board more than $300,000 — but board officials still won't publicly say whether it paid a ransom to regain control of its stolen data.

As SooToday first reported, the board was targeted by Royal, a new yet notorious form of ransomware recently deemed a threat to the U.S. healthcare sector.

When the board’s computer and phone systems were breached Dec. 15, the hackers sent a type-written note through school printers and photocopiers — demanding a "modest royalty" in exchange for the large amount of personal data that had been encrypted.

“If you are reading this, it means that your system were hit by Royal,” said the ransom note, which went on to mock the board for being vulnerable to such an attack. “[L]ikely what happened was that you decided to save money on your security.”

Sai Huda, a leading cybersecurity expert, was a recent guest on "Inside the Village," a news and current affairs podcast produced by Village Media. You can watch the full episode here.

Every episode is available on this news site /insidethevillage. If you prefer the audio version, it is available wherever you find your favourite podcasts.

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