A ransomware attack targeted Roseburg Public Schools Monday morning, blocking access to the district’s email, website and software, school officials said.
Superintendent Gerry Washburn said IT personnel are working to restore encrypted files that were affected by a computer ransomware attack. Washburn said the district took steps to “neutralize” the attack and said it didn’t appear student, staff or parent information had been stolen or compromised.
As of Tuesday morning, the district websites were still down. In an effort to repost calendar information, Roseburg High School published a temporary website.
Ransomware is a type of malicious software that threatens to publish the victim’s data or perpetually block access to it unless a ransom is paid. Washburn said the district can’t release information about the ransomware demand due to police’s investigation.
“We are making every effort to ensure that our systems are brought back on line (sic) and to minimize disruption to our schools. We will continue to provide updates as more information becomes available,” Washburn said in a statement.
Sgt. Dennis Chrisenbery, a spokesman for the Roseburg Police Department, said the Roseburg police department is not investigating the matter.
Earlier this year, a Massachusetts school district paid a $10,000 bitcoin ransom to hackers following a cyber attack on its system, according to CBS News. The local police chief, Michael Goldman, said he advised the district to pay the ransom and had a brief negotiation with the hackers. Goldman said when the district agreed to pay the ransom, hackers sent passwords to unlock certain files to prove the files could be salvaged.
Goldman told CBS Boston it is “impossible” to track cyber extortionists down.