SCIOTA, Ill. (WGEM) — A 15-year-old student at West Prairie Jr/ Senior High School has been charged with Criminal Damage to Property and Harassment by Electronic Communications after he allegedly hacked into the school’s computer network, according to the McDonough County Sheriff’s Office.
Sheriff Nick Petitgout reported that on September 17 his office was asked by the school to investigate a student hacking into their network causing it to malfunction repeatedly.
Petitgout said the school’s IT department had worked to fix the problem with temporary results and reoccurring issues.
Petitgout said McDonough County Detectives then investigated the issue further and identified a computer IP address that was the source of the hacking. Detectives were then able to trace that IP address to the student.
Petitgout explained the hacking caused a major inconvenience to the school and hindered the education they were able to provide for students learning remotely due to COVID-19 quarantine mandates.