Governor Cuomo Directs Division of Human Rights and State Cyber Incident Response Team to Support North Shore Hebrew Academy Community Following Anti-semitic Hacking Incident

New York State Division of Human Rights will Conduct Virtual Forum for School Community
State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services' Cyber Incident Response Team Made Available to Assess School's Cybersecurity Readiness

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December 18, 2020 

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that, as the FBI and local law enforcement continue to investigate an anti-Semitic cyberattack against the North Shore Hebrew Academy on Long Island, he has directed the State Division of Human Rights and State Division of Homeland Security to provide additional support for the school community. As part of the attack, hackers posted images of swastikas and Nazi soldiers on the school's website and leaked personal information of students and teachers.

"This anti-Semitic attack is simply despicable, and the fact it came as the school community celebrated Hanukkah makes it even more repulsive. As we work with our partners on the local and national level to hold the perpetrators accountable, New York State will deploy resources to help the staff, parents, and students at North Shore Hebrew Academy in the aftermath of this senseless act," Governor Cuomo said. "By deploying these resources, we are sending a message loud and clear that hate has no place in our state — online or in person — and that New York will always support and protect those targeted for crimes based on who they are or what they believe."

As part of the comprehensive state response, the State Division of Human Rights will coordinate with the school to conduct a virtual forum for the North Shore Hebrew Academy community to provide supportive resources as they address the impacts of this incident. This event, which will be planned on a timeline set by the school, will include an overview of the state's human rights law, resources and advice to help parents discuss the incident with their children, information about how the state responds to cyber crimes, and an overview of the legal protections against bias crimes.

In addition, the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services' Cyber Incident Response Team — which was created by Governor Cuomo in 2017 — will make itself available to assess the North Shore Hebrew Academy's cybersecurity practices, helping prepare the school to better identify and prevent future attacks. The CIRT's review will be conducted at the school's earliest convenience and the team will work with law enforcement partners to ensure it does not interfere with the ongoing investigation.