Data Breach Reported At School District In Northern Westchester

A data breach may have exposed information related to some students at a school district in Northern Westchester. 

Westlake High School in Mount Pleasant.
Westlake High School in Mount Pleasant. Photo Credit: Google Maps street view

The breach was announced by Mount Pleasant Central School District Superintendent Peter Giarrizzo on Friday, Feb. 17, who said that several student email passwords may have been compromised by the incident. 

After the data breach was discovered on Friday, an investigation into the matter found that several passwords belonging to Grade 7 students in the district had been posted to a shared Google Classroom during the 2020-2021 school year. After this document was found, it was immediately removed. 

School officials are still trying to determine if any other similar information was ever posted publicly by staff members, and why the passwords were posted in the first place. 

The data breach was limited to passwords belonging to Grade 7 students, officials said. So far, no actual or attempted misuse of the leaked passwords has been found. 

Despite this, school officials are still taking precautions to make sure no students are negatively impacted by the breach. To make sure of this, the district reset all passwords for K-12 students at 12:15 p.m. on Friday, Giarrizzo said. 

After the reset, Westlake High School students had a forced password reset, and students of Hawthorne Elementary, Columbus Elementary, and Westlake Middle Schools were given a new password by teachers. 

Now, the data breach will be reported to the New York State Office of Data Privacy and Security. Additionally, all faculty will review best practices related to data security, Giarrizzo said. 

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