IT Services Ransomware Update 

Due to the recent increase in Ransomware attacks targeting Higher Education Institutions, the Irish Health Services Executive (HSE) including UCD’s affiliated hospitals, IT Services are currently rolling out a number of additional security measures to help protect the University’s information and systems. 

Latest Security Measures

For the latest security measures please click here.  Please visit this page regularly for updates.

Top tips to avoid Ransomware

  • Beware of Phishing Emails.  Look out for urgent emails, always verify links and never open attachments you were not expecting. If you do receive a malicious email, please mark it as "spam" in Gmail and make your colleagues aware of the threat.  Find out more.
  • Use the Gmail Web Client and Gmail Mobile App. Using the Gmail web client and Gmail mobile app rather than other email clients such as Outlook is strongly recommended, as Gmail includes University specific warning messages when it detects a potential phishing message. 
  • Install Sophos Anti-Virus Software.  Sophos endpoint protection is available for free for Windows and Mac computers from IT Services Software Downloads.
  • Apply Updates Immediately. Apply security updates and patches to operating systems, software applications including browser plug-ins when they are available.
  • Think before you install software or "Apps": Only download and install software or "Apps" from reputable sources that you trust.
  • Backup Backup Backup. Backup your files frequently using the 3-2-1 rule. Review IT Services file storage locations for backup options.
  • Practice good password management in accordance with UCD’s Password Protection Policy. If you believe your UCD account may be compromised, change your password immediately. Never reuse your UCD password on non-UCD sites.
  • Ensure that any servers or IOT (Internet Of Things) devices that you own or manage are updated with latest security patches and up to date anti-virus software.
  • Review IT Security's top tips page for more recommendations.

What to do if you think you have fallen prey to Ransomware?

  • Disconnect your Device from the Network which will sever the cybercriminals' connection. Disable the Wi-Fi, remove the network cable or just shut down your device
  • Remove all USB keys and external storage devices from your machine and do not connect them into any other device.
  • Change your UCD Connect password. Cybercriminals have accessed your machine and may have monitored your activity, so change you UCD Password immediately and monitor your utility and bank accounts for suspicious behaviour.
  • Contact the IT Services Helpdesk Immediately. Ransomware can spread quickly across University network, so contact the IT Helpdesk ( / +353-1-716-2700)
  • Do Not Pay the Ransom as this will only make you a greater target for other cybercriminals’. These are criminals, so there is no guarantee that they will honour their word.

Remain vigilant and report any unusual activity to the IT Helpdesk ( / +353-1-716-2700)