Probe into Melb high school privacy breach

The education department is investigating a privacy breach resulting in the accidental publication of Melbourne high school students' personal records.

The accidental publication of hundreds of Melbourne high school students' personal records is being investigated by the Victorian government.

Education Minister James Merlino says the privacy breach at Strathmore Secondary College, in the city's northwest, is "nothing short of appalling."

"It's distressing for students and their parents because it may result in embarrassment, in bullying," he told reporters on Wednesday.

"These things should not happen."

Human error is believed to be behind the publication of more than 300 students' records on the school's intranet service, which News Corp reports includes information about medical and mental health conditions, medications, and learning and behavioural difficulties.

The records remained online until Tuesday, the Herald Sun reported, when parents and students saw the information.

It listed conditions such as Asperger's, autism, ADHD and medication including Ritalin.

In a statement, principal Jillian English said the school was looking at how the breach occurred to ensure it did not happen again.

"I was shocked and disappointed to learn that this information was incorrectly uploaded to our intranet. I am so sorry for the distress and hurt this has caused our students and their families." she added.

Mr Merlino said education department privacy and IT staff would visit the school on Wednesday to make sure all staff understood privacy and IT issues.

"What I can say to parents and students across our education system, this looks to be a one-off human error, but it is a very serious matter," he added.

Opposition education spokesman Tim Smith said it was more worrying if human error caused the breach.

"This is really serious data that's been breached, it's children's private personal, medical and education data and frankly it should be sacrosanct," he said.

Strathmore Secondary College was contacted for comment.

2 min read
Published 22 August 2018 at 3:26pm
Source: AAP