O'Gorman High School officials are facing questions about data security after a 17-year-old student was able to hack into the computer, Internet and phone systems last Thursday morning. Superintendent Tom Lorang says everything was returned to normal by that afternoon after discovering the breach.
"We met with security experts this morning and we have made some adjustments to be certain, or as much as we can be certain, that it will not be hacked again," Lorang said.
Lorang says that at this point in the investigation, no data is believed to have been stolen. The student in question is now facing a felony intentional damage to property charge.
"We will do what we have to do, and if it's been hacked and somebody's in there, and obviously the authorities have to be contracted," Lorang said.
Meanwhile, people are already going to Facebook in support of the teen in question. On the page, it says the student accessed the network from a computer within O'Gorman High School. The post continues to say that the student helped restore the network by showing what he had done. The page also says the student will not be walking at graduation and that he's currently suspended. Page creators vouch for the student's character, saying that he is an Eagle Scout, well-rounded AP student and member of the National Honor Society.
School administrators are hoping to learn from this incident and move on with a stronger network.
"We've fixed some things and the lasting impact is that it's alerted us to the fact that we have to be more secure," Lorang said.
Lorang hopes the school is now more secure in a technology-driven world.
"This is a red flag to us, and we have done and will be doing all that we can to make it secure so we can maintain their trust and take care of the information that we have of teachers, students and families," Lorang said.
The initial estimate of the network shut-down is said to be around $1,000. The Minnehaha County State's Attorney's Office will review the police reports to see if the charge against the 17-year-old should be amended in Juvenile Court.