Data compromised at Gig Harbor private school

Staff writerDecember 13, 2013 

A breach of confidentiality regarding financial and other information discovered at a private Gig Harbor school remains under investigation, the school’s director and a law enforcement spokesman both said this week.

Darcie Bigelow, head of school at Gig Harbor Academy, said the school is working closely with the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, the school’s bank and its payroll company to investigate what the school calls “accounting irregularities” in its payroll system. An email also was sent from a school account that contained confidential information.

The problems were discovered in late October, according to a letter sent to parents and school benefactors dated Nov. 4.

The school, located in the Artondale area, has 108 students in preschool through grade five.

According to the Nov. 4 letter, the school discovered that an email went out with an attachment that contained names, addresses, and contact information of employees, donors and families. In addition, the letter said, some names listed bank account numbers, credit card numbers and staff Social Security numbers.

The letter said that the person suspected of sending the email was suspended and no longer has access either to the school or its accounts. Bigelow said that because the matter remains under investigation, she could not tell a reporter whether that person was an employee or a volunteer.

A Sheriff’s Department spokesman confirmed that the investigation is ongoing.

Debbie Cafazzo: 253-597-8635

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