Confidential information released after school district refused to pay hackers’ ransom demand, report says


The Clark County School District (CCSD) in Las Vegas reopened for in-person learning on August 24. He was attacked by hackers three days later in an incident first reported by The Wall Street Journal.

On the morning of August 27, the statement said, some CCSD computer systems were infected with a virus that prohibited access to certain files. The Wall Street Journal reports that hackers released documents containing social security numbers, student notes and other private information from students and CCSD staff after officials refused to pay a ransom in exchange for unlocking the district’s computer servers.

According to the CCSD, the school district currently serves more than 320,000 students in Clark County, Nevada.

The CCSD did not say whether confidential information had been released, but acknowledged “that some current and former employee information may have been viewed or acquired by the unauthorized actor.”

The district said it “had not received any reports of actual or attempted misuse of the information concerned” and issued a warning to students and staff out of caution.The school district immediately notified law enforcement, which involved third-party forensic investigators to investigate the incident, the statement said. Investigators concluded that CCSD was the victim of a criminal ransomware attack.

The school district is working to restore all systems to ensure full functionality, the statement said.

CCSD is not the only district to fall victim to a cyberattack in the New Year.

Public schools in Hartford, Connecticut have postponed in-person classes and online learning to the start of the school year, citing a ransomware virus that caused systems to crash in the network infrastructure.

“Everyone at Hartford Public Schools was ready to welcome our beautiful capable students back in person and remotely. We will provide updates when we have additional information to share, ”read a statement posted on the district’s website.

And the Miami-Dade School District saw dozens of attacks early in the school year.

Last week, school officials announced that a 16-year-old student had been arrested and charged in connection with several of the attacks. The student, officials said, admitted to orchestrating eight attacks.

The teenager’s computer and gaming system were taken into account, Miami-Dade Schools Police Chief Edwin Lopez said, adding that it was not clear if the student was working alone .

Officials say they believe there are other attackers. Some of the IP addresses involved in the attacks date back to Russia, Ukraine, China and Iraq, Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said. It is not known if there are physically attackers in these countries, but school officials said they were working with international authorities in their investigations.

CNN’s Christina Maxouris and Artemis Moshtaghian contributed to this report.


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