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Ransomware Attack Crippled Chicago Public Schools

Ransomware Attack Caused Massive Data Breach

Batelle for Kids recent ransomware attack by dark web hackers has left the Chicago Public Schools administration with a large-scale data breach. The recent malicious hack involves a data breach that affects up to 560,000 individuals that are associated with the Chicago school district.

Cyber analysts have reported that 500,000 students along with 60,000 employees were targeted in the December 2021, ransomware attack.

Battelle for Kid charitable program involves 2.8 million students from 267 school administrations across several US states, this was recently revealed by the education not-for-profit organization.

Battelle for Kids Ransomware Attack

The Ohio-based Battelle for Kids was launched as a charity organization that performs non-for-profit educational assessments for several USA public school systems. With the statistical information garnered by the organization; it can share its recommendations with the school administration instructional models. Therefore, by the analysis of students’ performances, the shared data could be utilized by the public school systems. The more extensive educational design provides more rewarding instructional models that can evaluate both students’ and teachers’ performance during the school year.

The Chicago Public School district (CPS) shared that its partnership with Battelle for Kids involves the evaluation of its teaching body, and the assessment of data, which the company uploads for students’ educational courses.

A recent report by CPS confirmed that the ransomware attack on Battelle for Kids, have affected the private data belonging to 495,448 students, as well as 56,138 of its workforce, which is employed in various capacity in its school system.

CPS says that the data stored on The Battelle for Kids’ network system that host students’ data for 2015 through 2019, affected almost its entire administration’s personal information inclusive of students’ and teachers’ assessment score.

CPS Confirmed Ransomware Breach

A more detailed report states that during the school years 2015-2016, 2016-2017, 2017-2018, and/or 2018-2019, the dark web hackers accessed staff members’ names, schools, employee ID numbers, and CPS email addresses, and Battelle for Kids usernames.

Reportedly, the ransomware hack that is specific to the 4 years detailed that the hackers accessed children’s names, date, and place of birth, sexual identity, and academic rank. The public school that each student attends was also affected by the cyber security breach. In addition, the Chicago Public Schools identity Card number, and State Student Identification number were a part of the breached data. Other relevant data affected in the cyber attack involves each student’s course work, and scores from formative assessments used for teachers’ evaluations, according to the CPS’s data breach confirmation.

However, according to the Chicago school district administration, the ransomware hack did not expose some critical information such as Social Security numbers, phone numbers, addresses, health information, or financial details.

So far, CPS has disclosed that it has moved to further protect those affected by the ransomware hack. Any students or employees affected by the situation will receive free credit monitoring and identity protection from CPS.

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