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Dublin: 4°C Thursday 13 May 2021

Teenagers' personal details illegally accessed by hackers at Carlow school

A full garda investigation is now underway.

Image: Shutterstock/photokup

DOZENS OF STUDENTS at a Carlow secondary school have had their personal details compromised after the school’s IT system was targeted by hackers.

St Leo’s School released a statement to parents informing them that their children’s details, including their PPS numbers, may have been taken.

A garda investigation is now underway.

The all-girls school said that it became aware of the data breach on 4 April and that two members of staff had been targeted. The school said the hacking “appears to have been an attempt to obtain monies from the school but thankfully, our financial controls were successful in preventing this happening”.

The letter to parents added that their children’s PPS details, full names as well as their dates of birth may have been stolen. Parents were informed two weeks after management became aware of the issue.

“Upon discovery, a thorough investigation was undertaken and we have taken immediate and appropriate steps to contain and remedy the breach and to prevent any re-ocurrence. The Data Commissioner has been informed and the matter has been reported to An Garda Síochána,” the letter added.

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The school stressed that the hackers’ desire was to take money from the school and said that there is a “minimal risk” of those whose data was taken being exposed to fraudulent activity. The statement from principal Clare Ryan added that “it is regrettable that this breach occurred and we apologise unreservedly”.

Gardaí confirmed that an investigation into the breach was ongoing.

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