Just in time for Fall Semester, it’s time to look back on the three data breaches that occurred in July.
To be fair, three data breaches in a single month is a pretty good month when you consider that Adam Dodge, who tracks data breaches at educational institutions, has recorded 94 on his Educational Security Incidents web page.
The first reported data breach was a case of hacking and came from the University of California, San Diego’s Moores Cancer Center. Roughly 30,000 records were exposed, only 36 of which included Social Security numbers. All of the records contained patients’ names, birth dates, medical record numbers, and diagnoses and treatments dating from as far back as 2004.
The theft of two laptops from Kansas University’s Pharmacology and Toxicology department resulted in an unknown number of exposed records. Police said an unnamed professor who resigned in March never returned the laptops, which are university property. Officials don’t know what information was stored on the computers, so cannot estimate how many people’s records may be at risk, or how vulnerable they might be to identity theft.
Laptop theft was also the source of the third data breach, this time at University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. The university has notified 766 students that a laptop containing the names and grades of students who attended the university between 2003 and 2009. As many as 241 students’ Social Security numbers might also have been exposed because the university used Social Security numbers as student ID numbers until 2005.
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