$1.75 million stolen from Westfield State University in cyber theft incident

  • Westfield State University. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Staff Writer
Published: 2/28/2020 1:48:10 PM

WESTFIELD — Westfield State University fell victim to a $1.75 million cyber theft earlier this month, university president Ramon Torrecilha announced in a statement.

Student, faculty and staff data were not compromised by the breach, Torrecilha said. The theft was an isolated incident that occurred on or around Feb. 14, and the money stolen was intended as a payment to a state agency.

A university spokesman declined to specify which state agency the payment was intended for, or whether officials have information on why Westfield was targeted.

The Office of the Treasurer and Receiver General, the Office of the Comptroller, and Westfield State University immediately took steps “to ensure the integrity of the state and university financial systems,” Torrecilha said, and all are working with banking offices and state and federal law enforcement.

An investigation remains ongoing, according to Torrecilha, who noted, “given the investigation, we were not able to announce this sooner.”

Jacquelyn Voghel can be reached at jvoghel@gazettenet.com.

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