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Montana State University students react to cyberattack

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Posted at 4:43 PM, Apr 21, 2023
and last updated 2023-04-24 09:55:24-04

(Updated 8:17 p.m. MDT, 04/21/23 with clarifying information from Montana State University)

BOZEMAN — Montana State University reported a cyberattack on Thursday, April 20. Students shared their thoughts on the security breach and shared who they think could possibly be behind it.

MSU student, Aaron Foster, says he learned about the cyber attack Thursday morning.

“I got up one morning to do homework and when I couldn't log on to the website, I was like, Oh, that's strange, and then an hour later I got an email saying that they got cyberattacked,” said Foster.

Foster says he found the attack surprising considering MSU received over a $4 million award for improving cybersecurity.

“A year or two ago, MSU realized they needed to add some second-hand ID or an outside source because it was really easy to just get on a website. So they had that because there's that problem, but apparently, that wasn't enough,” said Foster.

Montana State officials clarified that the $4.47 million award from the Department of Homeland Security in 2022 was purely for research and is completely unrelated to the day-to-day operations of the campus network.

Foster's friend, Jackson Wall, says this cyberattack has affected his exams.

“Had two exams canceled today," said Wall. "One of them, students couldn't study for the exam because they can access d2l and then the second one, the teacher just canceled it because he couldn't access the exam.”

Wall and Foster have their own opinions on who could be behind this attack.

“It's probably like a computer science kid or something that's upset about something. I don't know exactly, but that's just my guess,” said Wall.

“Well, it could be something like TikTok getting back at Montana for banning them,” said Foster.

For these two, the cyberattack is giving them less homework, and more time to prepare for their exams.

“Oh darn. Less homework for me to do. Oh, man, I can't do it now,” said Foster.

“I’m not opposed like, I was a little nervous about a couple of them (exams). So nice to kind of get those off the plate,” said Wall.