Centennial HS students hacked into district systems; info access - KPTV - FOX 12

Centennial HS students hacked into district systems; info accessed on current, former students

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GRESHAM, OR (KPTV) -

High school students hacked into Centennial School District information systems and accessed details on current and former students, according to administrators.

Phone messages and emails were being sent to parents about the situation Friday.

The district reported “a couple” Centennial High School students were responsible for the breach. District spokesperson Carol Fenstermacher said a CHS senior and junior had used a school computer to perform the hack.

District staff has found the access points believed to have been used by the students and secured them.

Administrators are working with law enforcement to determine the full extent of this incident.

“The question is always 'Why?'” Fenstermacher said of the incident. “They weren’t looking over a teachers shoulder saying, 'Oh, that’s their password.' They were able to actually go in and access the network,”

Based on the initial investigation, the district stated it appears names, birthdays, addresses, schools, years in school, phone numbers, state education numbers, gender, race and ethnicity were accessed for current and former students in the district.

At this time, it is not believed that social security numbers were accessed during this breach.

“We are in the process of identifying students who may have had additional information accessed and will be communicating with the families of those students with more specific information as soon as possible, which we anticipate will be within the next few weeks,” district officials said in a statement.

The two students involved in this hack face emergency expulsion. Fenstermacher told FOX 12 one of the students said their reason for the hack was "just to prove I could do it."

One parent at the school told FOX 12 the skill of the students was impressive and showed vulnerabilities the school needs to address.

“I don’t condone that they did, but my first reaction was, 'Cool!' They were smart enough to do it, good for them,” Lenny Hoselton, parent of a high school junior, said. "It shows the weakness of the system and they exploited it." 

District officials said the hack was discovered this week but they are not sure when it actually happened. Officials hope to know more in the next few weeks and said they would post updates at csd28j.org.

The Gresham Police Department is now also investigating this case, and the two students may face criminal charges.

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