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U.S. Secret Service Investigates School Data Breach

After a data breach in Maine exposed the personal information of school district employees last month, the U.S. Secret Service is now investigating the incident, which did not affect student info.

by Gillian Graham, Portland Press Herald / December 6, 2019
Mercedes Mehling/Unsplash

(TNS) — The U.S. Secret Service is investigating a data breach that exposed the financial information of Maine's MSAD 6 employees.

One of the district’s servers was hacked last week and a piece of ransomware was installed, according to school officials. The breach happened on Nov. 30 and was discovered Dec. 2 when employees returned to work after a long holiday weekend, according to school officials.

Employee information that could have been accessed without authorization includes names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, direct deposit information (including bank account and routing numbers), dates of hire, mailing addresses and income information.

School officials do not know how many employees have been impacted, but said no student data were compromised.

“At this time, we do not know if any such information was accessed, or if it has been, or is likely to be, misused,” school officials said in a press release.

School officials notified employees of the breach on Dec. 4 after being granted permission by the Secret Service. In addition to providing protection to the president, vice president and other officials, the Secret Service investigates crimes against the financial infrastructure of the United States.

“In these situations, the Secret Service controls when we can notify people because they are in charge of the criminal investigation,” school officials wrote in an FAQ about the incident posted on the district website.

All current and former employees were notified of the incident by email and a notice will be published in newspapers this week, according to the district.

MSAD 6 serves the towns of Buxton, Standish, Hollis, Limington and Frye Island in Maine.

©2019 the Portland Press Herald (Portland, Maine). Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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