Officials from Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) say the system was the victim of a data breach over six years ago.
The breach compromised the personal data of approximately 1,000 students who attended FCPS between November 2005 and November 2006. The hacked information included names, social security numbers and dates of birth.
Upon learning of the hack, FCPS officials involved the FBI, Maryland State Attorney General's Office and the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE). A thorough investigation ensued and was completed this month.
Officials say because the breach happened so long ago, it is impossible to definitively identify the source. However, the investigation concluded that the information may have been taken from the MSDE system, which has since taken steps to increase the security of its system.
"While the breach does not appear to have originated with FCPS, we have been taking – and will continue to take – aggressive action on behalf of those affected," FCPS wrote in a statement.
Part of that action includes providing those affected with services offered through Kroll, a global leader in risk mitigation and response, to protect their identity for 12 months at no cost.
FCPS officials say they will contact former students impacted by the breach with additional information as soon as possible.
Anyone with additional questions about the breach is encouraged to email the FCPS information security department at firstname.lastname@example.org or to call 301-644-5332.