Two parents have made payments to hackers who sent bogus emails asking for St Lawrence College school fees.
The first fake email was sent on December 27 and invited recipients to pay their school fees for the Lent and Summer 2019 terms in advance, in order to receive a discount.
The email initially asked parents to make payment in Crypto Currency to secure the discount and further emails from the same perpetrators offered false bank account details into which funds could be paid.
A further email, under the guise of a school registrar, was sent this month.
The school, in College Road, Ramsgate, says an investigation is taking place and the Information Commissioner’s Office has been notified of the data breach.
A spokesman said: “On December 28, we became aware of a potential fraud whereby a fake email account was being used to contact parents offering an early pay discount, with the funds to be placed into non-school accounts or crypto currency.
“Despite the fact that the fraudsters had deliberately targeted the school at a time it was officially closed for Christmas, prompt action was taken and all parents were alerted to the risk, and the police, Action Fraud and the banks’ fraud teams were notified.
“The ICO has also been notified regarding the data breach. We are currently aware of just two payments that were made by overseas parents to the fraudsters, and both families are seeking redress from their banks.
“The fake emails were the result of a quite sophisticated hack, which gave the hackers access to some personal data, primarily email addresses. Parents have been assured that additional cyber security measures have since been implemented to further improve the defences against such threats.”