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Staff need ‘more work’ on cybersecurity after fake REF scam

Image: Rawpixel, via Shutterstock

Phishing exercise expected to show more education needed among staff opening suspicious emails

There is “a bit more work” needed to keep universities’ Research Excellence Framework submissions safe from cyberattacks following a “phishing” test carried out by the REF, which is is expected to show mixed results from institutions.

Last week a group of 151 universities were subjected to a fake scam sent from the REF2021 team, which was testing whether staff clicked on a suspicious link sent to them in an email. The REF submission system is being tested to make sure it is secure when universities begin to send submissions for the REF2021 exercise.

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