Wawa Mayor & Council – Settlement Reached In Computer Breach Lawsuit

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In keeping with our commitments to providing the best possible government to the citizens, taxpayers and valued employees of the Municipality of Wawa, we have reached a settlement with Theresa Stewart, an individual who has not contested our allegations that she improperly accessed the Municipality’s computer servers and used personal information from those servers to harass Municipal staff and Council Members.

The individual’s actions resulted in damage to the reputations of the Municipality and our staff and their families. The court file (2509611 0) is no longer under its court order imposed seal. As such, the contents of that court file are available to the public, including the minutes of settlement signed by Ms. Stewart indicating that she is not civilly contesting the Statement of Allegations made against her.

As part of the settlement agreement, she does not civilly contest accessing the Municipality’s computer servers and removing data which may have contained taxpayer information, personnel and personal employee information and protected Municipal information including budgets, legal advice and closed session council minutes.

She is not civilly contesting that she then altered and disseminated some of this information anonymously on the internet (including social media) and distributed it publicly. She has agreed to pay $10,000.00 to the Municipality, to help compensate for the costs incurred in pursuing this matter.

The allegations against the individual are grave civil wrongs and the Municipality’s efforts to right these wrongs through the legal system evidences our seriousness in protecting the Municipality, our employees and the residents of this Community.

In 2010, when we discovered that our servers had been accessed by the individual, we took extensive measures to protect our computer network from future breaches and no further breaches have been discovered since that time.

The contents of the court file can be obtained by contacting the Sault Ste. Marie Registry Office at 705-945-8000 and any records held by the municipality can be obtained through a Freedom of Information Request by emailing and paying the prescribed fees or can be obtained electronically through the office of Chris Wray by calling 705 856-2244 ext. 223 or e-mailing request@wawa.cc.