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Long Island schools have received more cyberattacks in recent years, according to state data

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Long Island schools were victims of at least 29 cyber attacks in the last three years, according to New York State Department of Education data obtained by Newsday.

Schools on Long Island were the targets of ransomware, computer hacks and other cyber attacks that exposed Social Security numbers, home addresses and other personal information of students and staff.

Some of the more recent attacks affected Riverhead Central, Eastern Suffolk BOCES, West Babylon and Manhasset school districts.

Cyber attacks in schools across New York saw a 61% jump — from 23 in 2019 to 44 in 2020 and 71 last year. Officials said the recent spike could be due to the pandemic, as school networks were being accessed on more computers that didn’t have proper protection.

Thirteen of the attacks on Long Island involved someone infiltrating the schools’ computer systems, and 16 were due to human error — such as clicking a link that releases a virus.

Sabrina is host and producer of WSHU’s daily podcast After All Things. She also produces the climate podcast Higher Ground and other long-form news and music programs at the station. Sabrina spent two years as a WSHU fellow, working as a reporter and assisting with production of The Full Story.