TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — The Leon County Schools website and social media accounts were hacked Tuesday morning.
The hackers posted racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic phrases to the school district's main page and social media pages along with making claims that all of the district's information was theirs.
Leon County Schools initially released the statement below:
"This morning our website was hacked by unknown perpetrators who posted disgusting racist content. It is our understanding that multiple school districts across the country were also victims of this hack.
Early indications are that this was accomplished through our website provider and not through a local network. We have been in contact with the Leon County Sherriff’s Office and Florida Department of Law Enforcement to provide them information. No personal data was compromised."
Our website is currently offline as we troubleshoot the issues.— Leon County Schools (@LeonSchools) March 16, 2021
Shortly after releasing the above statement, LCS assistant superintendent Chris Petley said it appears the cause of the hack was an administrator account with a compromised password.
Blackboard, a web community management system, released the following statement:
“On Tuesday morning we received reports from the Leon County School District that its school site which uses our Blackboard Web Community Manager website product (WCM) was compromised. Our product and security teams immediately began work to investigate and resolve the issues. Our initial investigation has determined that the unauthorized activity occurred through a district-managed SAML account that belongs to the district which is used to authenticate with our server. There is no indication that the WCM product was compromised and we have no reports of any other WCM client experiencing similar issues at this time. We are working closely with the district and local law enforcement on further investigation into this issue.”
The LCS website is currently offline as the district troubleshoots the issues.
This week district employees are off due to spring break.
According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, network intrusion is under Florida statute 815.06, a 3rd-degree felony if the person is identified and did not cause any harm.
Ultimately, the state’s attorney office would make the final decision on the specific charges.