ROCKDALE, Tex. (KBTX) - More than 350 employees with Rockdale Independent School District had their personal information stolen. District officials said an employee responded to an email from a scammer pretending to be the superintendent.
On January 30th, an employee got an email from someone who appeared to be Superintendent Denise Monzingo. The scammer used a picture of Monzingo with a gmail account. They requested copies of all the W2 forms for district employees.
"The employee responded and sent all the information that she thought I requested, but it ended up being a scammer instead," said Monzingo.
The information included social security numbers, addresses and other personal information from faculty, staff and even substitutes who worked in Rockdale ISD over the past year.
"It's scary for our staff and what they now have to go through for their identify theft. I mean, I am having to go through this too, we are all in this together," said Monzingo. She said they didn't find out about the scam until Monday when false tax filings for several employees were discovered. The district immediately contacted the police. The investigation is now being handled by the FBI.
"The IRS has an investigated unit, so we are working closely with them. With the data breach, we are using mitigation services and signing all of our employees up for that at no cost for an extended time," said Monzingo.
Rockdale ISD's technology department is cracking down on their cyber security and is training their employees on how to detect a scam.
"We will send out emails and attempt to phish our staff members and if they do fall for it, then it will take them to a training video and do some remedial training," said Ken Swiech, the Director of Technology. His department is also working with security companies and meeting with teacher regularly to make sure they don't fall for another scam.
"It gets harder and harder to keep up with the criminals and what they are doing. We just hope other school district's don't also fall in the trap," said Monzingo.