Auditor General urges state to invest in cybersecurity for school districts |

Auditor General urges state to invest in cybersecurity for school districts

Paul Guggenheimer
Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale

Auditor General Eugene DePasquale on Thursday urged legislators to invest in helping school districts strengthen cybersecurity as part of the next state budget.

DePasquale said that despite a 2017 survey by his office showing a majority of Pennsylvania school districts were concerned about the increased risk of cyber attacks, no action has been taken at the state level.

“With the number of cyber attacks continuing to rise, the state should make sure school districts have the resources they need to protect themselves,” said DePasquale. “A comprehensive approach to the problem would especially help medium- and small-sized districts shore up their defenses.

“Ransomware, which holds computer systems hostage until a payment is made to the hacker, could push a school district in a dire financial crisis.”

DePasquale pointed to a February malware attack on a school district in Perry County as an example of the growing risks districts face. Newport School District had issues after an emailed virus compromised the computers of several staff members. Student data was not compromised.

DePasquale encouraged district administrators to contact their legislators to ask for a statewide cybersecurity funding stream.

“A failure to invest now could end up being more expensive in the long run,” he said.

Paul Guggenheimer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Paul at 724-226-7706 or [email protected].

Categories: News | Pennsylvania
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.