The ASURITE system was shut down Wednesday evening after an unknown person downloaded a file containing the user names and passwords of ASU students or staff, University officials said.
There isn’t any evidence suggesting the encrypted information was compromised, but ASU said it shut down its system in an effort to protect personal information.
The system will remain down into Thursday afternoon as a precaution, but classes will continue as scheduled. In the meantime, students are left without access to ASU email accounts and Blackboard, an online platform for coursework.
Elementary education senior Leah Variano said she was unable to turn in homework assignments for three classes Wednesday evening.
Variano said the assignments had been on Blackboard since Sunday or Monday night, but because of her lighter Wednesday schedule, she planned to do the assignments the evening that ASURITE was shut down.
“Wednesday night is my night to do all my homework,” she said. “My teachers post readings on Blackboard, and that’s the only way I can see my homework.”
According to Julie Newberg, spokeswoman for ASU, a system shutdown isn’t necessarily standard protocol after suspected cyberattacks but was intended to “protect the ASU community.”
At around 5:20 p.m. Wednesday, Arizona State alerted students and staff that the system “may have been compromised” and all web services would be down until Thursday.
About 80 minutes later, a more detailed update was distributed, explaining why the system was shut down.
Variano said she thinks two of her teachers will allow her to finish her homework late but does not have high hopes for the third.
Still, she said she is not upset about the crash and that one day without Blackboard should not have made such a difference.
“In the real world, if you had a week to do it and you missed your deadline, you can’t just tell your boss the system crashed,” Variano said. “It’s kind of like a life lesson not to procrastinate, even though most students do.”
Variano added that she uses her ASU email address as her primary email, so during the ASURITE shutdown, she will not know how many emails she is missing.
ASURITE is the primary login for online services at the university. Every person associated with ASU has a unique ASURITE user name and a customizable password.
More details will be released later on how to re-submit for an ASURITE account.
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Jack Fitzpatrick contributed to this report.