DESOTO PARISH, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – With school right around the corner, Louisiana school districts are facing cybersecurity threats.
The last attack happened over the weekend -and according to school officials, the attacker wants money.
If you call any school in Desoto Parish, you won’t get an answer. The district has cut off all phone lines an internet connects and the Superintendent wants to assure parents and students, it’s in the districts best interest.
He says the schools have not been attacked at this point. “Our technology team, as great as they are have never dealt with some of these types of issue’s, and when you see them a little frazzled, it’s scary,” said Superintendent Clay Corley.
There have been four successful ransomware breaches on schools throughout Louisiana, now many schools, like Desoto parish, are updating their systems. Caddo parish is doing the same and this school system has not been attacked but wants to be ready just in case. “We are following every guideline issued by the state of louisiana in addition to other protocols that have been put into place that we’re not going to talk about,” said Mary Nash Wood with Caddo Parish Schools.
“They’re holding your data or encrypting your data to keep you from utilizing it and asking for bit coin,” said Corley. Desoto parish is aiding the Sabine Parish School District after they were attacked. Corley says this is a learning experience so they will know what to look out for. “They’re having to start from scratch. There’s no email. There’s no documents.”
Desoto plans to have everything back up and running by the end of this weekend.
School districts that have been attacked include Sabine parish, Tangipahoa and Morehouse parishes along
with Monroe City schools.