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By James Eng and Associated Press

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. -- Rutgers University has hired cybersecurity firms to protect its computer networks after they were disrupted by hackers at least four times during the past school year. One firm, FishNet Security, was hired before the attacks. The university hired two other firms — Level 3 Communications and Imperva — after the hacks.

New Jersey's flagship state university is expected to spend between $2 million and $3 million on cybersecurity this year, university officials said. The money is a new expense that the university has cited as one of the reasons why it raised tuition and fees 2.3 percent for the 2015-16 school year. first reported on the developments, which were confirmed by a university spokesman.

What Is a DDoS Attack?

July 28, 201400:43

Rutgers' computer network was disrupted four times during the 2014-2015 school year. School officials haven't determined whether one party was behind all four attacks, but they said the hacks appeared to be related.

Unidentified hackers in the past year have also targeted the University of Connecticut, Penn State's engineering school and University of California (UCLA) Health, which runs four hospitals in the university's campuses.

Related: University of Connecticut Hack Exposed Students' Credit Cards, SSNs