FRANCONIA — Souderton Area School District students and staff were greeted back to school this year by a hacked computer network. 

Information on the district website posted Sept. 2 and 3 gave few details, but said there had been a "network disruption" and said students with school-issued devices should power off the device and bring it back to school with them. 

Another update the night of Sept. 3 gave more details.

"This is an update on the network disruption which affected the district over the Labor Day weekend. On Sunday, September 1st, the District experienced a cyber attack.  Upon detecting the issue, district personnel immediately shut down the district-wide computer network and disabled Internet connections to avoid further damage. 

"The safety of students and staff is our highest priority.  While there will be some inconvenience as we recover critical systems and restore service, there is no threat to the safety of students or staff.  Parents should also be reassured that systems containing financial information are housed off-site and have not been affected.  We have also contacted and are working with the appropriate authorities. 

"We are very thankful for your patience in this unusual situation.  School will continue as normal and we will provide regular updates as we respond to this incident," the website said.

"We're still in discovery mode, so there's not much more I can tell you," Superintendent Dr. Frank Gallagher said in a follow-up phone interview. 

More information may be available in the upcoming days, he said. 

"We're functioning with an abundance of caution," Gallagher said. "We have lots of resources helping us." 

Updates are being posted to the district website at www.soudertonsd.org

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