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Ransomware attack costs Soo Catholic school board more than $300K

Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board is projecting a deficit due to cyberattack; board also doling out cash for credit monitoring, cybersecurity measures
20200301-Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board, H-SCDSB, winter, stock-DT-02
Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board (H-SCDSB) office. File photo, Darren Taylor/SooToday

The Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board will operate with a $325,000 deficit for its 2022-2023 budget due to a ransomware attack that crippled the board's information systems in mid-December and compromised personal information belonging to a number of its employees. 

"This deficit is a result of the cyber incident," said business superintendent Justin Pino in an email to SooToday Monday. "Before the incident the board was projecting a balanced budget."  

Additional expenses related to the Dec. 15 cyberattack covered by the board's cyber insurance are not being disclosed. 

The English Catholic school board is also spending USD $69,212 annually for three years on software from SentinelOne, a California-based cybersecurity company, in order to protect it from potential cyberattacks. 

A two-year credit monitoring service for affected school board employees through TransUnion will run the board $30,000 following the Royal ransomware attack, which resulted in the theft of personal information — including social insurance numbers and banking information — for staff members employed by the board between 2019 and 2022. 

Board officials are not disclosing whether or not the school board paid a ransom to the attackers.