University of Edinburgh Network Hit By Huge DDoS Attack in Freshers Week

The university was forced offline for “a couple of hours” this week by a cyberattack that has been reported to the UK’s National Cyber Crime Bureau.

The University of Edinburgh was knocked offline this week by a suspected massive distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack on the campus network during Freshers Week.

The university’s websites and wireless network gateways were out of action for two hours due to the flood of junk traffic.

The university’s £43 million supercomputer, which can perform more than a million billion calculations in a second, does not appear to have been affected by the attack.

Student data is not thought to be at risk but the incident has been reported to the UK’s National Cyber Crime Bureau.

Rigid measures

A University of Edinburgh spokesman said: “The university takes cyber security very seriously and has rigid measures in place to protect our systems and data.

“Our defences reacted quickly and no data has been compromised. We will continue to work with our internet service provider, the National Cyber Crime Bureau and with other universities to prevent these network attacks in future.”

In a statement, JISC, the university’s internet provider, said: “While JISC is responsible for protecting connections to the Janet Network for its members (colleges, universities and research centres), members are responsible for protecting their own cyber space.

“However, JISC also provides DDoS threat intelligence to its community and provides advice to members affected by cyber attacks on how to deal with the problem and minimise the impact.”

UK universities are thought to be at high risk, with one in three said to face hourly cyberattacks.

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