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Ransomware Shuts Down Nantucket Schools

Nantucket Public Schools canceled classes Tuesday morning and shut down student and staff devices, safety and security systems, including phones and security cameras, after discovering ransomware on its network.

(TNS) — Nantucket Public Schools were closed early on Tuesday, Jan. 31 as an online ransomware attack overtook the entire island’s public school Internet system, according to an email sent Tuesday morning from the Nantucket schools’ superintendent obtained by MassLive.

Nantucket Superintendent Elizabeth Hallett wrote in the message, “Earlier this morning, we discovered that Nantucket Public Schools computer systems were compromised by Ransomware. All student and staff devices have been shut down, and our safety and security systems, including phones and security cameras, are also disabled.

“For that reason, students and staff will be dismissed today at 12:00 pm with the exception of athletic events, which are still scheduled as usual. No school issued devices should be used at home until further notice, as it could compromise home networks. We will provide any and all updates as they become available.”

Hallett did not provide other information in regards to the situation. The Nantucket Police Department did not immediately respond to MassLive’s request for comment.

Earlier this month, Swansea Public Schools also cancelled classes due to a ransomware attack.

“Due to ransomware attack, our network is shut down,” Swansea Superintendent John J. Robidoux tweeted at 4:08 p.m. on Jan. 3.

“School is canceled tomorrow 1/4/23. Principals will be sending one call and ... the cancellation will be posted on news stations this evening.”

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