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Monday, March 9, 2015

Wait, what now it was a cyber attack that messed up Florida's first round of tests? #getthestorystraight

From the Sunshine State News: The Florida Department of Law Enforcement and Florida Department of Education are calling technical issues plaguing the writing test of the Florida Standards Assessment a result of a “cyber attack” carried out on the test’s servers by an unknown assailant.

Funny because just earlier today (and all last week) AIR was blaming it on a software error.

From State Impact: Test-maker American Institutes for Research says and update to the student database caused the problems.
“We updated student data, which was not immediately available to the testing servers,” the company said in a statement. “When students logged onto the test, the servers were forced to reach out to other databases to get the necessary student information.”
A sentiment echoed by Pam Stewart last week, from her press release.
The primary cause for the difficulties centers around a software issue on the login server. I assure you we are working with AIR around the clock to resolve reported technical difficulties. AIR has taken full responsibility for the issues and has dedicated all available resources to fixing the problem.
Now they say it is hackers. Maybe next week it will be martians, How long will it be till they blame teachers? When the results come in I am sure.
Here is the thing, it may have well been a hacker though if Pam Stewart told me today was Monday I would check my calender and then get two independent sources to confirm, but if it was why did they say it was something else for so long?  It does not comfort me to think it took them a week to "discover" a hacker.
My wife thinks I might be being a little unfair, that hackers could have disguised their attack as a software issue and fair enough but if that turns out to be the case it means they built a crappy system but either way the FLDOE cannot be trusted to investigate themselves.


  1. Now they are saying the problems were only PARTIALLY caused by a cyber attack! Color me skeptical!

  2. I am calling BS on this one right now. And we still had issues today.