Los Angeles Unified School District Hit by Ransomware Attack

The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) reported on Monday that a ransomware attack had occurred, but school activities were continuing.

The attack on the LAUSD resulted in district-wide disruptions to "email, computer systems and applications." The school district, which is the second largest in the nation with more than 640,000 students, enlisted the support of federal agencies over the weekend to deal with the attack.

Agencies assisting the LAUSD included "the Department of Education, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Department of Homeland Security's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)." Local law enforcement also participated.

School instruction isn't getting interrupted after this attack, although classes will need to carry out "adaptive attendance collection," the LAUSD indicated. Food service is continuing, and payroll processing for teachers is continuing. Also uninterrupted were adult education and early education programs, plus "scheduled beyond-the-bell" activities.

The LAUSD seems to have first reported the problems in this Sept. 5 Twitter post, which described "technical issues of an external source" that disrupted computer systems and e-mail. The post had suggested back then that some services might be unusable.

The LAUSD has created an Independent Information Technology Task Force that aims to issue "recommendations within 90 days, including monthly status updates" in response to the ransomware attack. No details about the ransomware demands, or the possible perpetrators, were described.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.


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