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cyberattack northern essex

Cyberattack shuts down community college in Massachusetts

March 7, 2023
Northern Essex Community College's campuses have been closed for 5 days, but hope to reopen Wednesday.

Northern Essex Community College in Massachusetts has closed its campuses for a fifth day on Tuesday because of a cyberattack that began last week. 

Boston.com reports that the college first became aware of unauthorized access to its network on March 1, and the school, which has campuses in Haverhill and Lawrence, began working with both law enforcement and cybersecurity experts to investigate. 

“We are still working through details and continuing to put protections in place,” the school said in a statement on Monday.

The school announced on Thursday that its campuses would be shuttered on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. The closures then stretched into Monday and Tuesday.

“As it appears that this was a cyberattack, the College is conducting a full systems audit to determine exactly what systems may have been affected and what impact, if any, there is on student and employee information,” the school said on Sunday. “At this time, the College has no forensic evidence that this incident resulted in the unauthorized access to or acquisition of personally identifiable information.

“In the event that the investigation determines that personally identifiable information was compromised, appropriate notifications will be made, including contacting impacted individuals directly with guidance and next steps,” the college wrote.

The college said it is aiming to be operational on Wednesday.

About the Author

Mike Kennedy | Senior Editor

Mike Kennedy has been writing about education for American School & University since 1999. He also has reported on schools and other topics for The Chicago Tribune, The Kansas City Star, The Kansas City Times and City News Bureau of Chicago. He is a graduate of Michigan State University.

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