Merced College is a community college located in Merced, California. The school has approximately 8,900 undergraduate students at one time. This public school may have recently exposed some of its students due to the cyber attack.
In a recent attack, hackers gained access to the Merced College data servers and encrypted key files. Once the files were encrypted, the hackers demanded the school pay a ransom to get access to the files restored. This is known as a ransomware attack and it's happening increasingly to different schools.
This Merced College data breach first started on October 25, 2022, and it went on until November 3, 2022. At that point, the network was secured, and an investigation into the matter began. It took time to determine exactly what information was leaked due to this attack.
Students at Merced College are the most likely to have been affected by this cyber attack. If your information was stored on the college network, it might have been leaked in this attack. You should take immediate steps to protect yourself, starting with getting your credit history and possibly putting a freeze on your credit at the different bureaus. The college is offering credit monitoring services to anyone it believes was hurt by this attack, and if you receive a notice from the school, you can use the service to protect yourself for free.
The Merced College breach impacts thousands of files potentially, and we don't have a specific count. We do know that many students were potentially harmed by this attack.