Cybercriminals target private school in Newcastle with phishing scam

  • The spam email was sent to parents of Royal Grammar School students in Newcastle and it asked them to pay the fees in bitcoins to get a discount.
  • The attackers had access to the parents’ email addresses, following which they sent the fraud emails.

Recently, cybercriminals tried to scam parents of students from a private school to pay the school fees in bitcoin to get a discount in the fees. Royal Grammar School (RGS) in Jesmond, Newcastle was the victim of this latest phishing attack.

As a result, the school administration has warned parents to stay away from subsequent fraud emails related to payments. Furthermore, RGS’s headmaster John Fern told the affected families that the scam was reported to the police.

Academic institutions under target

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), which investigated the incident told that other schools are also likely to be targeted.“[We are] aware of other phishing type attacks that have been targeted towards schools. Royal Grammar School has made us aware of an incident and we will assess the information provided,” ICO told media.

It appears that the spam emails contained spelling, grammatical and punctuation errors. In addition to that, it claimed to offer discounts to those who paid through bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies.

“We are aware that parents have received an email claiming you’ll receive a 25% discount on fees for passing over details or claiming that you can now pay by bitcoin/cryptocurrency. Please note these are phishing emails and should not be opened or any links clicked. We are currently investigating this breach and information will be passed on to all parents in due course.” told RGS on its website.

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