Cincinnati Public Schools accidentally sends students' personal information to others' families

CPS: 'We believe the problem is resolved'
Posted at 1:28 AM, Aug 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-16 18:28:20-04

CINCINNATI — An email "error" that resulted in students' bus route information being sent to other families should be resolved, according to Cincinnati Public Schools spokesperson Lauren Worley.

"We regret the error. The safety of our students, including the safety of their personal information, is really important to us," Worley said in a statement Friday morning.

The emails sent to CPS parents Thursday should have contained information about their children's busing schedule for the upcoming school year, Worley said that night - and they did. But Worley said around 500 of the 7,000 emails also contained the personal information, including names, bus numbers, bus stop locations and pick-up times, of other children on the same bus route.

The information shared included students' first and last names, their bus pickup and dropoff locations, the bus route number and bus number. The emails did not include any information about students' home addresses, personal records or other sensitive information.

The first complaints arrived around 4 p.m. Thursday, according to the district. Dozens more followed.

After investigating, Worley said the district concluded the error "is a result of a bug in the program used to generate the e-mails." The district's IT team created a patch to fix the bug.

Worley said school district officials are confident the email error was not the result of a data breach or hack.

"CPS is working to make sure all student information is secure," Worley said. "We will provide updates to the impacted families as soon as we can."

Worley added that families can look up bus stop and pick-up times by using the PowerSchool app or calling their child’s school.

Anyone with questions or concerns about the data issue can call 513.363.0076.