New details released on a “highly sophisticated” attack on Castle School Education Trust (CSET) academy that took place on March 16.
The ransomware attack has affected 24 schools near Bristol. According to new reports, 1,000 devices had been compromised and teachers are forced to start the new term without their laptops containing vital teaching resources, in addition to printers, photo scanners, and more.
The attack affected not only the Trust’s seven schools but 17 other schools that relied on the academy group’s IT infrastructure.
“The attack was on the academy trust CSET and not the council but impacted some maintained schools that received their IT services through CSET,” the Trust’s spokesperson said.
All of the schools had to cancel live lessons and postpone parents’ evenings.
with some schools affected worse than others, 16 servers have now been rebuilt for some schools, back-office systems are in place, and services are being restored, according to an announcement from the South Gloucestershire Council.
But still, teachers face stressful times as years of topic lessons, intervention plans, countless remote learning video lessons have been stolen.
But this is not all the trouble, “online registers, payment assessments, coursework, children’s reports, teacher appraisals and more have been inaccessible for the last month,” says Cllr Alison Evans, a teacher and school governor.
The cyber crooks encrypted the schools’ computer data until the Trust pays the ransom.
Based on the information received from the police and CSET, the Trust believes no personal data had been compromised.
So far, it is reluctant to pay the ransom.
CSET academy schools impacted by the attack are Downend Secondary, Charfield Primary, Marlwood Secondary, The Castle Secondary, Mangotsfield Secondary, Lyde Green Primary, and Severn Beach Primary.
The local authority maintained schools affected are Blackhorse Primary, Bromley Heath Infants, Bromley Heath Juniors, Emersons Green Primary, Kings Forest Primary, Mangotsfield CE Primary, St Michael’s Winterbourne, Hambrook Primary, St Stephen’s Infant School, Samuel Whites Infant, Hanham Abbotts Junior, Christchurch Infant School, Frampton Cotterell Primary, Frenchay CE Primary, St Stephen’s Junior School, Staple Hill Primary and New Horizons Learning Centre.