Photos from Oregon students’ social media pages taken, uploaded on site with ‘highly inappropriate content,’ district says
OREGON, Wis. — Students from the Oregon School District have had photos pulled from their personal social media accounts and uploaded onto a website containing “highly inappropriate content” on a foreign server, the district said Friday.
Superintendent Leslie Bergstrom said the district is “aware of recent social media posts in which students shared reports of highly inappropriate content on an external website.”
Bergstrom did not describe the nature of the inappropriate content. In an email sent to families Friday evening, she said student privacy laws prohibit sharing specific details.
The superintendent said district officials immediately flagged the site to the Oregon Police Department when they discovered it in September.
On Friday, the district learned more photos “with highly inappropriate, obscene and threatening messaging” were uploaded to the site. However, it hasn’t been confirmed the site is affiliated with an Oregon student, the email said.
Police are consulting with the Department of Justice about the website, the email said. In the meantime, law enforcement agencies are still trying to get the site taken down, which is made more difficult by the server being located in another country.
“We are concerned about our students who have been affected and are working to offer counseling and student services support,” Bergstrom wrote. “We also encourage parents/guardians to talk with your students about their social media accounts and privacy settings.”
News 3 Now has contacted the Oregon Police Department for further details.
The full email sent to parents reads:
Dear Oregon School District Families,
I am writing to let you know that we are aware of recent social media posts in which students shared reports of highly inappropriate content on an external website.
Upon learning of this website in September, OSD administration immediately contacted the Oregon Police Department. At that time, the website included pictures pulled from personal social media accounts of some OSD students. The initial investigation found that the website server was located in a foreign country, and law enforcement officials were unable to shut the site down or remove the photos.
OSD became aware this morning that additional pictures have been added to the site with highly inappropriate, obscene and threatening messaging. Law enforcement immediately began investigating and consulting with the Department of Justice. We are fully cooperating with them in this matter.
Law enforcement officials are continuing to try to get the site shut down. It has not been confirmed to us by law enforcement that the pictures have come from or the site is affiliated with an OSD student. If anyone has information to the contrary, please contact the Oregon Police Department immediately at (608) 835-3111.
We are concerned about our students who have been affected and are working to offer counseling and student services support. We also encourage parents/guardians to talk with your students about their social media accounts and privacy settings. For additional information about keeping kids safe online visit: WI Department of Justice – Internet Crimes Against Children.
We have spent the day investigating this website matter and concerning social media activities. I understand that this message does not address specific details that have been shared by OSD students via social media. Student privacy laws prohibit us from doing so publicly.
We have also spent time today listening and learning directly from our students about how we can do better to make sure our schools are safe and conducive to their learning.
Dr. Leslie Bergstrom
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