Protect yourself from the ‘WannaCry’ Ransomware Cyber Attack

You may have already heard about the global ransomware attack that is making the news around the world. This particular attack (referred to as ‘WannaCry’) comes in the form of an email with web links that automatically infect individual computers with ransomware once clicked and can spread to computers within a wider connected network.

If you receive an unexpected email that looks unusual, DO NOT OPEN IT. Instead, delete it immediately and report it to the UBC Information Security at

Some of the emails have had subject lines such as Copy_[with Random Numbers], Document_[with Random Numbers], Scan_[with Random Numbers], File_[with Random Numbers], and PDF_[with Random Numbers]. This is not an exhaustive list. Please be extra cautious and do not open any emails that seem suspicious or unfamiliar no matter what the subject line is.



Additional steps you can take to ensure your computer stays secure:

  1. Don’t click on any web links in emails unless you are expecting the message and are absolutely sure the links are safe
  2. Contact your local IT support to ensure that your computer has the latest security patches installed
  3. Use anti-virus software (the university offers free anti-virus software on the UBC IT website)
  4. Regularly back up the data stored on your computer
  5. If you think you may have been a victim of a cyber-attack, report it immediately to

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact the UBC IT Service Desk at