Little Rock School Board agrees to pay $250K to hackers
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KARK/KAIT) – A central Arkansas school district is moving forward after hackers breached its system, holding critical information hostage.
According to content partner KARK, the Little Rock School Board publicly voted to approve a $250,000 ransom payment to the hackers on Tuesday, Dec. 6.
President Greg Adams remarked this was not the outcome administrators had hoped for.
“It’s disturbing to think about paying any money to people who are criminals,” he said.
Adams explained the board held an off-the-books meeting in late November to discuss the attack. It was a meeting some community members thought to be a lack of transparency.
The “Our Community, Our Schools” Facebook page posted a statement about the decision:
“For the record, I support the district in how it is handling the attack, but the bottom line is six of our board members decided they were above the law,” the post read. “The issue for me is how government must work. Six members of the Little Rock School District failed us, and they failed democracy.”
Adams said the immediacy of the moment called for an outside-the-norm decision to have the meeting, but he understands people’s concerns about transparency.
“We will hope that as we go on that people will give us the benefit of knowing that we were trying to do the best thing for the most people, and the safest thing,” he said.
Adams added the payment could be possibly made as early as this week but could not say the form of payment that will be used. He also said the district is working to make sure this never happens again.
The district said the FBI is involved in the investigation, but a spokesperson could not comment at this time.
The decision comes after the Greene County Tech School District said it would not pay a ransom for hackers involved in a cyberattack on Friday, Nov. 11.
Officials said the incident left teachers unable to use computers during class. Services have been restored as of Sunday, Nov. 27.
Copyright 2022 KAIT. All rights reserved.