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Universities must invest properly in IT security

Underfunded IT systems leave universities vulnerable to cyberattacks

Christmas legends are full of grinches, gremlins and Krampuses—nasty devils come to destroy the joy of the festive season. This year, universities in Germany and the Netherlands faced a very real threat to their Yule peace: a serious cyberattack on their systems and data storage. 

IT staff at Maastricht University and the Justus Liebig University in Giessen worked through the holidays to combat what Maastricht described as “a major breach” of its systems, which occurred on 23 December. The Justus Liebig University only went fully back online on 6 January, after large parts of its systems were down for a month following an “exceptional” cyberattack. 

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