LONDON – Malware has been found on some laptops sent by the UK government to schools, BBC News reported. The devices were intended for vulnerable students who are home-schooling during the country’s current COVID-19 lockdown.

Russian Malware Found on Laptops Intended for Vulnerable Pupils

The issue emerged after teachers at a school in Bradford in West Yorkshire, England, shared details of suspicious files found on the laptops. They said the malware appearred to be contacting Russian servers. It seems that the Windows laptops had Gamarue.1 on them. This is a worm that Microsoft identified back in 2012. “Upon unboxing and preparing them, it was discovered that a number of the laptops were infected with a self-propagating network worm,” wrote one teacher.

The UK Department of Education commented:

We are aware of an issue with a small number of devices. And we are investigating as an urgent priority to resolve the matter as soon as possible. DfE IT teams are in touch with those who have reported this issue. We believe this is not widespread.

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