DIXON – The Dixon Public Schools website, Twitter account and email were compromised Sunday and issues continued into Monday night.
For about 12 hours Sunday night and into Monday morning, the district’s website was down.
On Monday, an email from an account associated with a Dixon Public Schools employee was sent to Sauk Valley Media. From the email’s content, it was clear it wasn’t the employee who had sent it.
The district was notified, and Superintendent Michael Juenger later confirmed that the district’s email had been compromised.
The district was working to resolve the issue, he said, which had extended to the district’s Twitter account and again to the website by 9:30 p.m. Monday.
At 7:13 p.m. Sunday, the school district announced on its Twitter account: “Our website has been hacked. We have notified our IT department, and they will be addressing it. Thank you for your patience.”
About 5 minutes after that tweet, the district’s website no longer was available.
By 7:25 a.m. Monday, according to Charles Kinsella, the district’s technology director, the issue had been resolved.
In an email to school staff, Kinsella said the website hadn’t been hacked, but the GoDaddy account that services the district website was “hacked and redirected to somewhere in Germany.”
Before the website was taken down, going to DixonSchools.org would redirect a visitor to another website, which had a black-and-white cartoon drawing of a girl and a list of “other conquests” claiming to have been hacked.
In his email, Kinsella told school staff that there was no virus on the website, and going to it wouldn’t cause an infection of the user’s computer.