Feds Are Actively Searching For Hacker Who Compromised School Systems

(PresidentialWire.com)- The cyberattack that shut down the computer systems at the Los Angeles Unified School District is being investigated by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, with officials claiming that the attack was criminal.

The second-largest school system in L.A.county is the L.A. school district. The attack was discovered late on Saturday night.

According to officials, a ransomware tool was reportedly employed in the attack, but no ransom demand has been made.

According to the Los Angeles Times, most internet services, including emergency systems, were operational again by Tuesday.

The attack affected systems that allow teachers to publish lessons and take attendance. The hackers also took the district’s website offline and denied staff and students access to email.

Alberto Carvalho, superintendent of L.A. schools, said no medical or Social Security information was taken.

Alarms were raised across the nation in response to the attack on the Los Angeles Unified School District, prompting urgent discussions with the White House and the National Security Council after the first ransomware signs were found late Saturday night and requiring password changes for 540,000 students and 70,000 district employees.

The nation’s second-largest district’s superintendent said no immediate demand for money was made even though the attack used technology that encrypts data and won’t unlock it unless a ransom is paid, and schools there opened as scheduled on Tuesday.

As a result of the pandemic-forced reliance on technology, such attacks have grown to pose a concern to U.S. schools, with many high-profile occurrences documented since last year. Additionally, ransomware gangs have organized significant attacks on US holiday weekends when they anticipate a shortage of IT staff and a break in security operations.

Even while it wasn’t immediately apparent when the LA attack started—officials have just stated that it was discovered, and a district spokesman has declined to provide any other information—Saturday night’s revelation reached the top echelons of the federal government’s cybersecurity organizations.

According to a senior administration official, this aid pattern was consistent with the Biden administration’s efforts to offer the most support possible to crucial industries affected by similar intrusions.

According to Brett Callow, a ransomware expert at the cybersecurity company Emsisoft, 26 U.S. school districts, including Los Angeles, and 24 colleges and universities have been affected by so-called ransomware thus far this year.

Many cybercriminals instead utilize the same technology to steal critical information and seek extortion payments as victims increasingly refuse to pay to have their data decrypted. The data is posted online if the victim refuses to pay.