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District will pursue false threats to new alert system

Dec. 4, 2017

 

In less than two days after launching the app, Anonymous Alerts, the Monticello Central School District has received six false alerts and threats. All of these reports were thoroughly investigated and deemed not credible.

Monticello’s Superintendent of Schools Tammy Mangus said the alert app is advantageous to the district in many ways. However, she warned that the district and Anonymous Alerts have the ability to “dig down” and find who is sending false alerts by finding their IP address, or internet protocol, a numerical labeled assigned to each devise that uses a computer system.

“This is an anonymous system. However, we have the ability to research and uncover the IP address that sends a message,” said Mangus. “We intend to fully research every report and, if presented as false, we will do all in our power to prevent it from happening again. That includes legal action.”

Mangus said the process to get to the IP address is a long and arduous one. And it’s a waste of the district’s resources. When the process is done, the district has the IP address as well as the location from which the message was sent.

“Our goal is to keep people safe,” Mangus added.

Monticello High School Principal Stephen Wilder said students should feel safe reporting issues through this system that are of concern. However, if students commit a crime, they will be punished.

“Anything that falsely causes public alarm, anything that is a crime, we will pursue,” said Wilder.

In addition to the false and inappropriate alerts, there were also messages received that were useful to the district, according to Mangus and Wilder.