Work to upgrade schools’ computer systems to begin after cyber incident on Anglesey

WORK to upgrade schools’ computer systems on Anglesey set will be fast-tracked over the summer holidays.

Forensic analysis of a recent cyber incident, which affected secondary schools, has found no evidence that Information and Communications Technology (ICT) systems were compromised.

The incident, however, has prompted Anglesey Council to bring forward planned works – as part of the Welsh Government’s Hwb programme – to upgrade information technology systems at its secondary, special and primary schools.

Data systems will also be transferred on to Hwb cloud services with the majority expected to be available for teachers and pupils by the start of the new academic year in September.

Fast-tracking the adoption and use of these systems – which is a target for all Welsh schools and supported by Welsh Government – will see Anglesey reach one of its strategic goals much sooner than planned.

Annwen Morgan, Anglesey Council’s chief executive, said: “The cyber incident has caused disruption to our secondary schools, but thankfully there is no evidence that their ICT systems were infiltrated or compromised.”

“Our main priority now is to ensure that our schools are not impacted further than the end of this term. Bringing forward work to upgrade information technology infrastructure of all our schools, will help make our systems as robust as possible and reduce the risk of any potential cyber-attack in the future.”

“I’d like to thank our secondary schools and external partners for their support over the last few weeks. I’m also grateful to our colleagues from Welsh Government’s Hwb team who have also offered assistance as we undertake this work as quickly as possible.”

Fears of a potential cyber incident were raised on June 23 after suspicious traffic was discovered on secondary school email servers.

Information technology systems – including email accounts – were temporarily disabled to contain the incident, which has affected Ysgol Syr Thomas Jones, Amlwch; Ysgol Uwchradd Bodedern; Ysgol Gyfun Llangefni; Ysgol David Hughes, Menai Bridge, and Ysgol Uwchradd Caergybi.

The Information Commissioner’s Office has already been made aware of the incident and an investigation is underway.

Anglesey Council said no further comment will be made at this time.

North Wales Chronicle | Anglesey