By Daniel Brumer and Richawna Cassie
On October 16th and 17th students and parents received a series of fake emails from the school and its administrators consisting of song lyrics, profanities, and false announcements. This was not the first incident of email hacking at Tech.
“This is a brand new way that the email was hacked. The last time was through a website in Belgium, while this time it was done on a U.S website,” said Michael Edwards, the online administrator.
“The website basically does something called spoofing. It basically mirrors sending an email from a certain person to another person. In actuality it is the website sending the email, but it doesn’t look that way. In the actual email it does say this is a fake email from deadfake.com,” Edwards said.
School emails are an essential part of how Brooklyn Tech communicates with its students and sends the announcements. Seniors receive daily emails from the College Office, while most other students use their emails to contact teachers and fellow students. Sending out emails is also the most common way Tech notifies parents of important information like deadlines or events.
As of now, students and teachers will get their announcements from Skedula. Apart from updating the school website, the administration is currently working on how to contact parents directly in order keep them in the loop.
The email hacking started with two people sending out emails. However, other students became a part of this scheme after visiting website used by the two original perpetrators and testing it out for themselves.
“Students are very crafty,” said Edwards, “the only prominent way to get rid of these problems in the future would be to stop giving out school emails.”
The Office of Parent and Student Engagement received numerous phone calls about the Parent Teacher Conference schedules sent to parents and students in one of the fake emails. These emails had many parents and students confused.
Elizabeth Brik ’14 said, “My father was probably affected more than me. He was really angry at the random spam he was getting, especially since he uses his email for his job.”
Some believe that the emails won’t show up again.
Brik continued, “To be honest, it would surprise me if the email hackings happened again. The school took this hacking very seriously. I don’t think Randy Asher is going to stand for another hacking, since it irritated a lot of parents and students.”
Although some seem to think this email hacking will never happen again, others beg to differ.
Elizabeth Keselman ’15 believes there will be a next time. “I do feel like there will be more email hackings in the future. I think seniors were responsible and they went too far.”
Other students thought these emails were a harmless joke.
Jennifer Aguilar ’15 said, “All it did was make reading important mail more difficult, but besides that it was actually pretty funny that Tech didn’t learn from the last time.” While students may have taken it as joke, parents may not have.
Aguilar added, “However, I do think it was taken too far. It was funny to have it among students, but when parents got involved it was no longer a joke, but a form of disrespect. Not only that, but it made the school look like it wasn’t doing its job.”