By Cameron M. Bray ’16
Confusion ensued as Mr. Andy Mazzolini’s students received an email from his account at 9:49 a.m, Oct. 24, telling them to follow the link to Google Drive and sign in with their email usernames and passwords.
“The way it was set up it looked really, really authentic,” said Mr. Jim Bopp, assistant principal for technology and instruction. “They set it up to have his signature at the bottom … so it really did look like his (email).”
Many students entered their information, but found there was no document and that this was not actually Google Drive.
Later that day, Mr. Bopp sent out an email urging students not to enter their information because the site was trying to steal their ID and password.
By entering their usernames and passwords, students inadvertently gave their personal information to an anonymous and possibly malicious source.
The website is now blocked, but the sources are still unknown.
“One the guys — I’m not sure how this student did this. He was able to trace it back to somebody in Italy,” Mr. Bopp said. “But we really don’t know.”
Mr. Mazzolini said he is not sure how the compromise happened.
“I don’t know,” Mr. Mazzolini said. “It wasn’t like I put in a password incorrectly or gave a password out.”
Despite the confusion and mysteriousness of the hack, Mr. Bopp said the school network remains secure since the event.
“Our network itself has never been hacked,” Mr. Bopp said. “So in terms of our own internal network, I feel pretty good about it.”
Many students have changed their passwords and moved on.
“Mr. Williams told me that I had to reset my password … like very quickly so the people could not hack my email too,” said Rece Pacheco ’16.
Pacheco added the whole event was “a big, big inconvenience.”
“It is good for people to just … be aware of even emails that look legitimate,” Mr. Bopp said.