Server Breach At Ohio State Exposes Data Of 760,000

University says it doesn't believe personal information has been stolen or used

Dark Reading Staff, Dark Reading

December 16, 2010

1 Min Read

Ohio State University this week is notifying past and present students, faculty, and staff that a university computer server was illegally accessed by unauthorized individuals.

A forensic investigation found no evidence that any information was taken, according to a press release, so the university does not believe the incident will result in identity theft for any of the affected individuals. However, it is offering free credit protection services.

In late October, the university discovered unauthorized individuals had logged into an Ohio State server that housed personal information for approximately 760,000 individuals -- including current and former faculty, staff, and students, as well as applicants and other individuals affiliated with the university, such as consultants and contractors.

The server houses names, Social Security numbers, dates of birth and addresses, the university said. No OSU Medical Center patient records or student health records were involved.

The university says it hired "some of the nation's best computer forensic consultants" to look into the breach. In late November, they concluded that although access was confirmed, there was no evidence that any data was taken out of the system by unauthorized individuals. The experts did find evidence that the purpose of the unauthorized access was to launch cyberattacks.

"We regret that this has occurred and are exercising an abundance of caution in choosing to notify those affected," said Joseph A. Alutto, Ohio State provost. "We also are working with a nationally recognized data security firm to further strengthen all of our systems."

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Dark Reading Staff

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