OUR VIEW: Swift response to received attack welcomed

Published 3:00 pm Wednesday, September 25, 2019

The Lanett City School System shut down its servers last week after a potential malware attack on the system’s computers.

The information provided at the time was understandably limited as everyone tried to scramble to figure out what had happened. In an email statement, Interim Superintendent Jennifer Boyd said the school system was “working with state and federal agencies and network engineers to determine the extent of the attack on our district.”

Here’s what we do know: One workstation in the district had a suspicious message on Sept. 18. After seeing the message, Boyd ordered all servers to be disconnected until the district learned of the extent of the attack.

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We applaud that decision, and we also urge parents to be patient as the system investigates the potential malware attack. As of Friday, Boyd wasn’t sure if any student records were compromised.

Boyd has been using her personal email, instead of working on a school email address, while the issue is investigated.

The truth is that there’s little information available about what actually occurred. We’re unsure what the malware message said or whether a true security breach occurred.

Regardless of that, it’s clear that Boyd and other administrators at the Lanett City School System took the message seriously and acted quickly to ensure as little data as possible was breached.

There will be plenty of time to dig into what happened, whether any private data was stolen and what that means moving forward. In today’s tech-centered world, this is an unfortunate reality of the times, and the school system has done all it can in the interim to ensure this investigation can be wrapped up quickly.

At this moment, it’s impossible to know if this is a serious problem or just an overabundance of caution, which is never a bad thing when it involves our schools and our children.

For now, we urge parents to be patient as this is investigated.