Leicester City Council’s cyber attack – your questions answered

Plus: the Taxidermy gallery closes, local asylum seekers receive measles vaccines, and Ukrainian students get to stay in Leicester.

Photo of a laptop. Credit: PeopleImages

In Focus

Leicester City Council’s cyber attack – your questions answered

by Molly Lee

What happened?

On Thursday, 7 March 2024, Leicester City Council identified a ‘cyber incident’. They were forced to shut down their phone and IT systems. Most of their systems are back online.

On Wednesday, 3 April 2024, the council revealed that 25 documents were published online by a known ransomware group. However, the group responsible have claimed they have access to more. These documents include rent statements, applications to purchase council housing and passport information.

Who’s responsible?

The hacker group INC Ransom claimed responsibility for the attack after posting on their blog on Monday, 1 April 2024, mentioning Leicester City Council as one of their latest victims alongside a ‘proof pack’ of documents. The group claimed to have extracted three terabytes of data from the council.

The council acknowledged this in an update from the city council’s Strategic Director of City Developments and Neighbourhoods, Richard Sword, on Wednesday, 3 April 2024. The statement said that a ransomware group was involved, and they’re known to have attacked several government, education, and healthcare organisations.

Leicester City Council has not officially named the ransomware group.

Was there a ransom demand?

Leicester City Council told The Gazette that there has been no ransom demand as of Friday, 5 April 2024 and no negotiation.

Criminal investigations are underway as the city council works with the cybercrime team at Leicestershire Police and the National Cyber Security Centre.

Because the investigation is still ongoing, the council can only share a limited amount of information. This means that the council could not answer some of The Gazette’s questions as releasing some information could hamper the investigation.

How do I know if my data has been breached?

Leicester City Council are in the process of contacting people who they know have been affected by the cyber attack. They are not accepting individual enquiries.

Do I need to do anything to protect myself online?

On their website, Leicester City Council have advised that if your passwords for other non-council logins are the same as what you use for the city council’s online services, you should change your password to be safe.

You can find more information on how to stay safe online on the National Cyber Security Centre website.

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Weather Forecast

by Phil Morrish

🌦️ Monday: A breezy start with a few showers throughout the day and some sunshine. Winds moderating max gust 30mph. Feeling mild at 15C. Min overnight temperature 9C.

🌧️ Tue-Fri: Remaining unsettled with spells of rain interspersed by showers. There are some brighter periods, too. Windy at times, max gusts 40mph. Max temps 14C with min temps of 7C. 

☀️ Weekend: A drier and brighter weekend is in prospect with winds turning to the SW. Max temperature up to 17C in mainly fine conditions. Staying mild at night, min 11C.

In the News

by Rhys Everquill

Taxidermy gallery at Leicester Museum closes: The long-standing exhibit dedicated to the mammals, birds and reptiles of the animal kingdom has closed to make way for a new climate change display –  Leicester City Council

Local asylum seekers receive measles vaccination: ‘Pop-up’ vaccination stations have visited accommodation sites in Leicester to ensure asylum seekers are protected against the virus amid concerns the city has become a “hotspot” for measles outbreaks – Leicester Times 

Speeding tickets sent to man after his death: The family of a man who was sent speeding tickets after being fatally struck by a lorry has spoken out. The man’s death is also the subject of an ongoing investigation by the police watchdog, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) – BBC East Midlands

DMU ranked ninth in new HESA figures:  Leaderboards released by the Higher Education Statistics Agency show De Montfort University placed ninth in helping students to start businesses. DMU students launched 104 firms in the 2022/23 academic year – De Montfort University

Ukraine students to stay in Leicester: Oleksandra Korshunova, Yeva Zhylova-Velter, Kira Myroshnychenko and Karyna Rudaia came to study at the University of Leicester in January 2023. They will now be able to continue their studies in Leicester after receiving sanctuary scholarships – BBC Leicester

Is Leicester safe? Here’s what the residents and data say: In this week’s feature, The Gazette looks at Rupert Matthews’ record as Police and Crime Commissioner ahead of the May elections. Our reporter, Molly Lee, spoke to local people and candidates and unpacked key data – Great Central Gazette

Is Leicester safe? Here’s what the residents and data say
As Tory and Labour candidates vie for the mantle of ‘law and order’, has crime gotten better or worse in the last few years?

Photo of the Week

Send your photos to news@greatcentralgazette.org to be featured.
Please include your name and a short description.
Photo of Prestwold Park near Loughborough

During a hike last week, editor Rhys ended up at Prestwold Park near Loughborough, adjacent to Prestwold Hall. Despite the hustle and bustle of the roads nearby, the surrounding woodland and churchyard were incredibly peaceful.

What’s On

by Leah Everquill

🚨 – Last chance
💷 – Entry fee
🆓 – Free of charge

🚨 💷 Pottery: Intermediate Hand Building – 9 April to 7 May 2024

Calling all potters! Attenborough Arts Centre is hosting a terrific 5-week course to help improve your pottery skills. Over 18s only. Runs Tuesdays 1pm-4pm. The full course costs £85, or £65 for anyone with a disability or staff and students at the University of Leicester.

🚨 💷 Carmen – 10 April 2024

Head over to De Montfort Hall for a fantastic performance of Carmen, performed by the Ukrainian Opera and Ballet Theatre Kyiv. Tickets from £27.50. Performance starts 7:30pm.

🚨 💷 The Epic of Sigurd and Fafnir the Dragon – 11 April 2024

Visit Leicester Guildhall to hear award-winning storyteller Jason Buck tell the years-old epic story of Sigurd, drawn from Norse and Teutonic legend. Tickets cost £13, or £11 for students with NUS cards, senior citizens, and those who are unemployed. Runs from 7:30pm-9pm.

💷 All England One Act Play Festival – 12 and 13 April 2024

Fancy watching some theatre? Pop down to The Little Theatre for a fun 2-day festival of short plays by local theatre makers. Tickets cost £10. Matinee and evening performances are available.

💷 Jewellery Making: Half-Day Workshop – 13 April 2024

Make some fabulous jewellery at Belgrave Hall in a half-day workshop led by Linda Sandeman. Runs from 10am-1pm. Tickets cost £55.

💷 Mamma Mia! – Outdoor Cinema – 13 April 2024

Are you a fan of ABBA, musicals, and having a good time? Head down to Belgrave Hall and Gardens for a delightful outdoor evening screening of the film Mamma Mia! Runs from 7:30pm-9pm. Tickets cost £8.

On the Market

by Mark Pearson

Meadway is a unique four-bedroom bungalow just over the city boundary in Glenfield on a substantial private plot with extensive gardens. The property has an octagonal central hub currently used as a music room, giving access to the bedrooms, kitchen, dining room and patio/hot tub area.

Price: £665,000

Food and Drink

by Rhys Everquill

Photo of Mixed Meze from Mangal

Bear with me on this one, as this doesn’t look great in the photo... But the vegetarian Mixed Meze from Syston’s Mangal Turkish Restaurant is incredible. It’s the perfect blend of everything you could want in a cold starter, and it never disappoints. I recommend pairing it with extra pitta or chips to scoop up the remaining hummus.

Price: £11.90

Sports highlights

by David Landwehr

  • Men’s football: Leicester held on in the fight for the top, beating Birmingham 2-1. Read more 
  • Men’s basketball: Leicester Riders suffer a severe loss against the Bristol Flyers 77-89. Read more
  • Men’s rugby: After a first-half hat trick, Leinster took it away with a final victory of Leinster 36-22 Leicester. Read more


by Megan Lupton

Photo shows the mansion in 1865 a few years before its demolition. Credit: Leicester City Council

The Greyfriars Mansion pictured before its demolition. The mansion once stood on New Street.

Degree-level part-time courses, workshops and seminars at Leicester Vaughan College

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