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Unidentified computer hackers posing as a district’s school superintendent tried to trick multiple Maine school departments into handing over employees’ personal data, and succeeded in gaining confidential information in at least one case.
The extent of the email scam came to light recently after Brunswick Superintendent Paul Perzanoski apologized to employees for mistakenly sending their W-2 forms, which contain tax data, to a fake email address.
Acknowledging the hacking trick, Perzanoski said, “Last week, a hacker got into our system and posed as the superintendent. The W-2 forms were sent to the fake address but without social security numbers on them, as our employee was adept enough to feel uncomfortable about including them.”
The school department employee who sent the employees’ W-2 forms to the fake email address said he thought he was responding to an email request from Perzanoski.
But, the employee added he was suspicious enough to delete the affected employees’ Social Security numbers. Thus, any risk to their personal information appears to be minimal. Brunswick school system has more than 400 employees.
The Brunswick Police Department and the school district’s technology department are working together to investigate the email scam.